If there’s a picture of an athlete next to the words “old school” in the dictionary, it’s a picture of Bill Pearl.
The 1986 (!) edition of his classic Getting Stronger: Weight Training for Men and Women still sits on my bookshelf, and for good reason. It holds an encyclopedic level of information on weight-training workouts for just about every activity (including being fit for the average workday). If you’re bored with whatever you’re doing in the strength-training part of your fitness plan, you could do much worse than to check out this book for ideas on how to bring new life into your exercise routine.
Here is one of my favorite excerpts from this remarkable book:
The Best Age to Start (from p. 359 of the paperback edition):
I remember my father once saying, “When the day comes I can no longer make even the smallest changes for the better, that’s the day I no longer care about living.” My father is now 83 and still uses this as one of his daily golden rules. I think this attitude has been instilled in me, for I haven’t given up or slowed down. I plan to keep exercising and watching my diet for the rest of my life.
These days, I see more and more people past 40 and 50 who look and act years younger because of a positive attitude, dietary consciousness and regular exercise. In fact, the middle years may be the best age to start an exercise program. Any increase in physical activity for a sedentary person generally produces remarkable and inspiring changes in vitality and spirit – more noticeable changes than during younger years.
This idea that exercise is actually the elixir that keeps us young has been around for decades. It’s a great reminder that the best ideas have real staying power. Consider that as we move into the holiday season with the inevitable array of get-fit (or thin)-quick books by celebrity “experts” packaged to look sexy and make a quick sale at your local bookstore. Sometimes, old school really is best.
Yesterday’s Every48 workout: Back in the saddle. A nice, moderate 45-minute BIKE ride at the gym.