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It Has Nothing To Do With Age provides self-help principles. The inspirational stories give concrete illustrations of overcoming many of life's challenges. Difficulties pertaining to depression, grief, divorce, and death are presented and worked through by the participants. Physical impairments, injuries, overcoming issues with weight, alcohol, and nicotine are also dealt with and resolved by the athletes.

This book provides a model on how to overcome some of the difficulties that confront all of us . Further, this read sheds a beacon of light on preventive measures for good physical and mental health. Research demonstrates that exercise is an important component in treating such ailments and debilitating illness such as depression, stroke, heart disease, brain or cognitive malfunction,and Alzheimer's disease.

I suggest that proper exercise can be used as a preventive measure for psychological, cognitive, and physical health as well. Follow my prescription and lead a better, more fulfilling, and healthier life.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

100 Mile Ultra Marathon, Athletic Identity , and Paco

"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful what we pretend to be."– Kurt Vonnegut
I just received an e-mail from an individual who completed a 100 mile ultra marathon in Sierra Nevada ,Spain and told me about a 73-year-old man called Paco, who completed the run also.  That is certainly impressive, and congratulations are definitely in order.  Goes to show you that “It Has Nothing To Do with Age”.
I think the above quote by Kurt Vonnegut is very clever as well as profound.  If you know who you are, you do not have to pretend.  A clear sense of self or a well formed identity will likely take care of that.
Yesterday, I talked with my  younger sister, who told me she would have liked to learn more about “How the extreme athlete trains” and why didn’t I  include that in my book  I told her that my book was not  about “how” but was clearly about “why”.  For me, the “why question” is more pertinent and interesting.  In talking about the extreme athlete, we are actually talking about his being, his way of life, or in other words, who he is.  It is not about pretending it is about being.
My sister wanted to know how the talented people, in my book, were able to “fit in “their exercise regime. For her, when she had a personal trainer, she was able to fit in that segment of time and was guided into performing certain exercises or sets of exercises with so many repetitions.  That is what she knows.  Why is she exercising in the first place?  Did she start with a personal trainer or exercise as a kid?  Was her form of exercise walking?  In essence, she still does not understand nor is fully cognizant of what it means to be an ultra athlete.  We do not “fit it in” because “exercise” is essentially a way of life.
I will give an example back in 2009, when I was recovering from my neck injury. Bless her heart as she came out to be with me during that critical time.  She told me she was in shape because she walked and had a personal trainer.  One morning, she even demonstrated her being in shape by doing certain yoga poses. Well to make a long story short, I took her for a walk on the trail.  It did not take long before, she was huffing and puffing and having difficulty keeping up with my walking pace.  So for her, being in shape meant something very different from me.
The ultra-athletes in my book, from an early age, employed fun, participated, and were good in sporting activities.  Then, at some point in their life, exercise or a sporting activity became more of their identity.  Their beginning or start may have been precipitated as the result of some trauma or personal crisis that was taken place in their life at that time.  It was then that they were on the road and started their transformation.  I believe that you will find their stories, compelling, interesting, and perhaps give you insight into your own life.    Find your journey and discover and not pretend who you are.


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