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The Gray Iron Fitness Newsletter, Issue #369. The Inevitable
May 15, 2024

The Inevitable

We all know it’s going to happen, even if we won’t admit it. What is the “it,” you ask? Answer: There comes a time when we cannot train as we used to and should adjust our workouts accordingly. Those who don’t make their workouts age-appropriate may discover that aging tendons and ligaments will rebel.

Most unfortunate of all are the guys (sorry to say, but it’s usually us, the guys) whose egos won’t allow us to admit we can’t do as much as we used to. Ladies, generally, seem to be smarter in this regard. Worst of all, some men quit working out altogether when they realize: if I can’t be the guy I was twenty years ago, what’s the point of training at all?

That’s really too bad.

Because those who quit are throwing in the towel at the time in life when regular exercise is more important than ever. Instead of adjusting to age-appropriate workouts, they simply drop out. And then what happens? Muscle loss accelerates while fat builds up. You’ve probably seen it happen to people you know.

My departed old friend, Rich Lalami, used to say, “You can miss a bus. You can miss an old girlfriend. But never miss a workout.” Right on, Rich! If you have been pushing heavy iron and are now entering your senior years, don’t stop training, but do adjust it.

Switching from lifting heavy to using more moderate weights and higher repetitions can make a world of difference. Or try using resistance bands rather than lifting free weights. Many professional athletes use resistance bands and love them. Or try devices like the Total Gym. Experiment and do what works best for you.

What about cardio? In my case, I adjusted my cardio exercise by gradually replacing running with walking. Years ago, I regularly ran long distances (though I was just a plodder) and belonged to a running club. At races, I noticed a good number of aging runners ran with chronically aching knees and backs. I don’t experience any of that from walking/hiking, and I still get to enjoy the beautiful outdoors while exercising my heart and lungs.

Of course, if you have no aches and pains at all, that's a different matter. If you fully recover from lifting heavy following a good night’s sleep, well, as the saying goes: "If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it." On the other hand, never ignore the little unpleasant messages Mother Nature may be sending. Yes, keep on training, but make the age-appropriate adjustments.

Seniors who are total exercise beginners, please start here.

Stay healthy. Stay fit.


Senior Exercise Central

Spread the word. If you like the newsletter, please forward it to a senior friend or acquaintance.

Photographs: Subscribers have asked when the newsletter photo at the top of the page and my website pictures were taken. Well, I was a mere 70 years old then. I’m 87 now. Though I remain active, I am no longer nearly as strong or muscular as I was 17 years ago. —LF

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Newsletter Policy

The Gray Iron Fitness Newsletter is a free publication sent twice monthly to subscribers. The purpose is to provide honest and realistic fitness information for people age 50 and above.

I have never been paid or received compensation of any kind to write a positive review or endorse a product. If I say that I personally use a product or service, it is because I find value in it and have paid for it with my own money.

Like newspapers, magazines, and television, this newsletter and my website contain advertising and marketing links. Naturally, I am compensated for these.

The newsletter and website provide information to help users establish and maintain a fitness lifestyle. But fitness information is not the same as fitness advice, which is the application of exercise and dietary practices to an individual's specific circumstances. Therefore, always consult with your physician for assurance that fitness information, and your interpretation of it, is appropriate for you.

Your comments and questions are always appreciated. Simply click on the "Reply" bottom.


Logan Franklin
The Gray Iron Fitness Newsletter

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