A couple of weeks ago now I wrote in an article to you about the story of Charles Eugster, a man who, at 95 years old, had just broken the world record for running the indoor 200 meters in his age group.
And ever since, I’ve been answering questions from readers curious about him: Questions like:
“Is it his genetics?”, “What’s his secret”?, “Does he take supplements?”…and so the list of questions keeps going.
I don’t know the exact secret to his success, but I BET it has a lot to do with the fact that he simply believes he can.
See, the more time I spend with people in my clinic – people coming to see me with all sorts of different health concerns — the more that I’ve come to realise that one of the biggest problems we’re suffering from as a society is the fact that most just don’t believe that it’s possible to be active and healthy in your 70s, 80s and beyond.
It’s as if people think (even say) “it’s just not meant to be that way”.
Maybe it’s true.
Yet when you watch Charles run, it starts to change that — if only for a few seconds.
See, we’ve grown up in a culture where society believes that if you’re lucky enough to get to 95, your every day experience will be fairly rotten.
And for some it is. Don’t get me wrong…I’m not writing this ignoring obvious illness and diseases that are likely to happen – as much by chance or genetic default, and the result of being around a little longer than others.
But I’ve long since come to the conclusion that it’s the belief of whether or not you actually can be active and healthy – long in to your 90s – that plays a huge part in whether or not that you actually will be (or are!).
I’ve met and helped far too many people in that age bracket to ever doubt it…
See, it’s your beliefs that ultimately drive everything that happens to you – including your health, mobility, activity and in the case of Charles, longevity.
Again, obvious, unforeseen illnesses and diseases NOT being over looked – but for most, that isn’t why they’re NOT living the active life they want!)
If you ever find your self-disbelieving that you could – or should – be more active as you grow older, maybe use Charles as your example.
It would be unlikely that anyone would run a race at 95if they didn’t believe deep down that they could do it.
When people ask me in clinic about what the future holds for them – as in how active they can get back to being or doing – I’m often listening or looking for that persons own beliefs in how likely they are to be able to do it.
Truth be told, it’s THAT lack of belief about what is possible when it comes to health, which holds most people back. The fact that you could take a walk every day for 30 minutes, or go a local Pilates or Yoga class once per week — even in your 60s, 70s and 80s, is irrelevant, if you don’t believe you can.
And most times, (not all the times!), that’s all that stands in the way of the next few years of your life being as active and “lifestyle rich” as you REALLY deserve.
To see more from Charles, you could head to Youtube.. just type in “Charles Eugster” and watch videos of him running the race.
It’s INCREDIBLY inspiring. Have a great week.
More stories like this in my new book, www.thehealthyhabitbook.com