In this letter . . .

  • Behold the Cloth Tape Measure

  • The Squat Thrust

  • The Search for Eternal Youth

Behold the Cloth Tape Measure

Of all the tools used for analyzing health and fitness, a simple cloth tape measure may be one of the best. Measuring the circumference of your waist will tell you more about your fitness than either scales or the Body Mass Index (BMI) formula.

Or as Jack LaLanne has been saying for ages, “Your waistline is your lifeline.” Additionally, an honest look in the mirror at your naked body is another low-tech but reliable indicator of how well you’ve been treating yourself . . . . and, it seems, a predictor of your future health.

Trainer and author Jon Benson (Fit Over 40) takes the tape measure method a step further, using a waistline-to-height formula as a predictor of heart disease. Mr. Benson tells us to measure right below the navel, and do not pull the tape measure tight. Write down that number in inches. Then measure your height (without shoes) in inches. Write that down too.

Multiply the results of your waist measurement by two. If the number is greater than your height, you are four times more likely to get heart disease. It’s more predictive than cholesterol tests, he says.

And the medical profession seems to agree.

Click to see this amazing compact gym system

The Squat Thrust

The Squat Thrust (also called Burpees) is a total body exercise that can really get your heart pumping and lungs gasping. Sound like torture? Not really, just a heck of a good workout and a real fat blaster.

Squat Trusts are perfect for high intensity circuits or intervals that combine resistance training with cardio.

Now if you're unfamiliar with this one, enter with some measure of caution. And senior beginners should wait until they've built a reasonable fitness base. Or do just a few reps to see what they're like.

For more advanced trainees: Go for it! Accept the challenge.

See Jennifer's demo here.

The Search for Eternal Youth

Ponce de Leon was looking for youth in all the wrong places. Instead of Florida, the Spanish explorer should have been digging in Africa.

According to Scientific American, naked mole rats – which are hairless, sausage-like rodents that live in burrows beneath the arid soils of Kenya, Ethiopia, and Somalia – have a remarkable ability to resist aging.

With a maximum lifespan of about 30 years, the naked mole rat outlives all other rodents by a wide measure. It lives about 10 times longer than the similarly-sized lab mouse and does not show the normal signs of aging such as dementia, menopause, and bone density loss until it's near death. Humans start losing bone density in their 30s.

Scientists are getting closer to understanding why these animals grow old so gracefully, and they hope their findings will lead to therapies for staving off age-related ailments in humans.

For more info.

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

Always consult with your physician before making dietary changes or starting an exercise program.

Your comments or questions are always appreciated.


Logan Franklin
The Gray Iron Fitness Newsletter