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Hope and Health for the Older Athlete

Age shouldn’t determine your ability, and there are many people who can prove it doesn’t. Learn how to stay at your best.

Growing up, I had only a few things on my mind: martial arts, basketball, video games, and girls. Most of the time, I was focused on becoming a professional athlete, in both competitive tae kwon do and basketball. And so in my young adulthood, basketball_boys_play_game_outside_fun_healthy_picI experienced two knee injuries that resulted in two surgeries. I spent seven years rehabilitating my knees before I discovered the power of raw plant-based nutrition and how quickly it would help me recover not only my health, but my dreams as well.

There is a belief in our youth-focused culture that says once you reach a certain age bracket your athletic dreams must fade away. I dreaded this as I got older because it was difficult for me to see my life beyond sports. I know what it’s like to eat, sleep, and practice a passionate activity day in and day out. The last thing any of us wants to accept is the possibility that we will have to hang it up and enter a world of stagnation, especially due to career or health challenges.

It has been my experience, and the experience of countless others, that simple changes in our lifestyle and thinking can create dramatic changes in our physical body. The powerful effect of a plant-based diet, focused on raw living foods, is getting your life back. So many people, including me, are picking up their past dreams and giving them another shot simply because they feel better, think clearer, and recover quicker. As an aging athlete, the obstacle becomes physical recovery and knowing where to draw the line in your training. When your body acclimates to a natural diet, the muscular matrix begins to awaken old motor patterns and re-learns how to do what it once did based on repetition and consistency.

I do not believe it’s ever too late to dance in the garden of your deepest dreams, whether they’re newly awakened or have been under the surface for years. It will require you to prioritize your health rituals over old habits that may cause you to slide backwards, but this is the price we pay for excellence. This is not simply about becoming a professional athlete, it’s about the opportunity to live your life on your terms, however you see fit, based on health of body, mind, and spirit!

Consider this excerpt from my book The Life Food Peak Performance System:

baseball_field_mound_pitch_sport_outside_healthy_fun_pic“The accepted projection for the general lifespan of a professional athlete is between the ages of 25–35 in most cases. I believe this is a terribly inaccurate determination of human potential based on the poor standards society currently operates under. Generally, 25 is the age a dedicated athlete begins to fully integrate the mental acuity of their sport with the physical application and evolve into a well-rounded athlete. I know from my own experience as a life-long driven athlete that I only came into the wider spectrum of athletic capabilities at the age of 24.

“The body is designed to regenerate itself in response to wear and tear. In fact, there is emerging research indicating that when we do vigorous exercise, our muscles require a consistent routine of equal or greater exercise to simply maintain itself as we move up in age. There is a large number of professional athletes instilling new energy into their careers in their late thirties and even late forties by changing their dietary practices. Many of the proposed theories and ideas on nutrition that have saturated the sports field have greatly limited the full potential of dedicated athletes.

“The corporate sponsors that help fund athletic endeavors from middle school sports all the way to the olympics are synonymous with the root cause of the cancer, obesity, and diabetes epidemic. Professional and Olympic athletes are not allowed to criticize their sports sponsors, and the individuals who compromise their integrity in endorsing soda, fast food, and sports drinks are rarely making those products a part of their daily routine. “

Do everything you can to hold back aging with a few more tips!

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