We've hit upon something with the Bodybuilding for Babyboomers column here on Bodybuilding.com. Countless emails await us each morning with questions about workouts, nutrition, and injuries, (so please have patience with us), and most letters end with the comment, "Finally, a place for the babyboomers." So many boomer voices are looking for a place to be heard.
As a group babyboomers have for the most part been ignored in the area of weightlifting, because our youth-oriented society views anyone over 40 as old and incapable of intense weightlifting and cardiovascular sessions. As a consequence, most weightlifting and exercise material geared towards them is mediocre at best.
Perhaps, we babyboomers are to blame for the notion that over 40 means old. It wasn't too long ago that our generation came up with the idea that anyone over the age of thirty was not to be trusted.
Let me rephrase, it doesn't feel like that long ago. Currently, as a group, we are in our mid-forties to almost sixty. Do you want to be thought of as old? Or would you rather have people comment, "you don't look your age." If we take a stand, starting right now, we can completely redefine the aging process.
Ten years from now, society will either continue to view this group as "old" or change that opinion because the babyboomers once again revolutionalized a societal norm; namely, how we define an older person.
In the 1960s the babyboomers were a revolutionary group because in the largeness of the group there were many, many voices singing out for change in society's view of hair, clothes, music, war, women's roles, and education. To redefine aging, we need to join together once again and shout about the need for fitness among our age-related peers.
I am proud to shout that I'm about to turn 46 and am in better shape than twenty years ago. But, I'm only one voice. Teaming up with Richard, gave me another venue from which to speak, and also another voice added to the cause. And believe me, Richard has a very loud voice when it comes to voicing an opinion on fighting the aging process.
After reading articles written about babyboomers, many of you have taken the time to write us about your efforts. In portions of a letter I recently received from Paul Nagel, you can see another voice is added to our revolutionary group.
I recently stumbled upon an article that you had written, "Active and fit in your 40's and 50's?...Beware of boomeritis". In addition to the well written and informative article, there are several pictures of you on the page. All I can say is 'Wow!' You should be very proud of the incredible physique that you have built. You are truly inspirational.
After months of struggling with workout schedules, proper nutrition, and making the time for adequate rest, I am seeing positive results. Seeing the 'end of the rainbow' in the likes of professionals such as yourself only fuels my desire to get even bigger and leaner than before, to eclipse the physique that I had been so proud of years ago.
As my friends continue to add inches around their midsections, instead of their legs and chests, it becomes easy to think of my efforts as a waste of energy in the fight against aging. Again, it is people like you, Diane who remind me that fitness is not the exclusive domain of college-aged kids, it is something that can be part of everyone's lifestyle, from students to professionals to work-at-home Moms and Dads. So, in addition to paying you the compliment of 'Wow!,' I should also say 'Thanks.'
Paul G. Nagel
Paul is well on his way to being in the best shape of his life. He is seeing results and has found a source of motivation to keep himself going while his immediate peer group is going the traditional route for age, which equates to living an out of shape life. If it were as simple as just being out of shape, a few extra pounds would not be so bad. But, with the extra weight comes increases in heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancer, and the list goes on.
Paul Nagel is putting forth much effort in his fight against aging through exercise and nutrition. Fitness will be a lifelong passion for Paul, and this Fields/Baldwin team looks forward to seeing Paul's before and after pictures, so that he may serve as a source of inspiration for others. I hear more voices in the group!
Richard just received some incredible transformation pictures from Tim H, a forty-year old Cincinnati, Ohio man that lost 92 pounds this year. Rather than just rest on his laurels of his awesome accomplishment, Tim now wants to build muscle mass. With building muscle mass as his current goal, Tim contacted Richard for help in his quest.
I was shocked at Tim's transformation. He has found the key to continued success in the weight loss battle. Forget "dieting"! Go for a complete lifestyle change just as Tim did. Tim went from being thrown out of an all you can eat rib restaurant because he was eating too much, to eating 2000 calories per day, supplementing with EAS products and engaging in cardiovascular activity three times per week.
Now, with this lifestyle change, Tim sets new goals and seeks out information on how to achieve a better physique and live a healthier life. He will continue to redefine aging by being lean and now muscular. Small steps, setting a goal, achieving the goal and now a new goal of muscle mass created Tim's legendary transformation. Tim, joins the voices, growing stronger in number, "we will redefine the aging process with a fit and healthy body."
Tim's transformation pictures will certainly serve as an inspiration to many of you. And we look forward to seeing another set of transformation pictures from Tim after he's gained even more muscle mass.
Tim's question for me concerned the bench press. He was concerned that it was not up to par. In other words, despite his amazing progress, Tim is not satisfied with anything other than total success in his quest for a new fit physique.
His bench press has already started climbing, and Tim is more muscular than his "after" picture here shows! He promises to keep us informed about his progress and send us more photos as he continues to gain a legendary physique.
Tim is a serious guy whose motivation and discipline are far above average. But just as Tim and Paul are shaping up, so can you! Get inspired, get moving, get in shape and send us your before and after pictures so that we may feature your awesome babyboomer body. And if you are already in shape, send us your legendary physique photos to add to the voices. Rather than be looked upon as a group of old people, let's all shout about our successes and become the group that rules the gym. We want to hear from you!
Diane and Richard
All submitted photos become property of Legendary Fitness, LLC; submission shall constitute a grant to the use of your photos and information as we deem appropriate.
Copyright 2002. Diane Fields, Member Legendary Fitness, LLC. All rights reserved. The advice given in this column should not be viewed as a substitute for professional medical services. Before undertaking any exercise or nutrition program, Legendary Fitness, LLC advises all to undergo a thorough medical examination and get permission from their personal physician.