“Youth is wasted on the young” — attributed to George Bernard Shaw
I am not sure I really believe that but what I would say is that young people often do not really appreciate what they have. As you get older, your body deteriorates in various ways. Some people are better than others at preventing this decline. I tried. I mean for years I ate whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted but I also did Karate, ran, surfed, meditated and tried in various ways to stay healthy.
But there were problems:
Software – my brain liked to stay up ALL NIGHT. No matter how much I meditated or exercised, I had really bad insomnia since I was a teenager. This is mostly gone now. I also was bothered by anxiety, and still am. These two factors really have an impact. They keep stress levels high, which is harmful.
Hardware – my body fights itself. I have a combo of Ankylosing Spondylitis and Crohns Disease. Nice. Inflammation causes chronic pain. This made exercise hard but still, I pushed on, I tried to get enough sleep. Then there was the operation. I now have an ileostomy and have for a few years. This alleviated a lot of the pain. But that left my abs weak and that makes your core weak.
Since the operation, as I got stronger I have tried to get back to something like good health. I am doing #keto to try to drop some weight and get back into a healthy weight. I try to do pushups which strengthen the core and back.
So this brings me to the inspiration for this post. About two weeks ago I started in a more focused exercise routine. This involved push ups. I was feeling pretty good and overdid it. I did too many push ups and I used a pull up bar on the floor so they were inclined pushups. I overdid it. This led to chest inflammation in my sternum. Only this morning did it stop hurting really bad and go to an ache. This is probably a result of not being in good shape and aggravated by AS.
But the recovery time is time is what is brutal. When I was in my 20's this would have been an issue for a few days, maybe a week. Now it's two weeks in and still feeling it. I am worried about doing push ups. I have been stretching that area out. I will ease back into pushups by doing them on the stairs, gradually working down to the lowest stair, then the floor. I will work up to more reps. And so on. But it is slow going.
The lesson: don't let yourself get out of shape, keep what you have, and make yourself better every day or, one day, you'll look back and wish you had.