Sunday, July 24, 2011

You seem a lot younger

Haven't blogged in a while... Haven't really felt I had anything to say that needed the long-format of a blog post. But recently I've been thinking a lot about age, partly because I turned a year older this month. Okay, yes, I do joke about being old, as my kids can attest, but the truth is, I don't feel old.  And I flat-out refuse to succumb to age.  Why does mid-life have to be a crisis?  If you're still young at so-called 'mid-life', where's the crisis in that?
I regularly run into people years younger than me who look years older, or people just months older than me who seem as much as a decade older to me.  Yesterday I had a twenty-something express surprise that I was in my 30's, and outright shock that I'm courting 40.  "You seem a lot younger."  That's because I AM young!  If attitude is everything, then dangit, I'm gonna be young for a long, long time.

But attitude isn't everything, I know.  The body that houses the attitude is a small factor.

I've been told I must have fabulous genes, and that may be true, but probably not.  My mom and dad, all of my aunts and uncles, most of my cousins, on both sides of the family, are or were at one time, overweight (many significantly so).  I observed this growing up, saw the health problems, the propensity for diabetes, and decided that was NEVER going to be me.  So I was in my late teens when I devised a plan for avoiding the fate genetics seemed to have in store for me.  Here it is, so simple it's almost silly:

Your pecs/boobs should always stick out further than your gut. Male or female, doesn't matter how old you are. One exception for ladies: you're five months either side of giving birth.  Belly fat, it turns out, is more harmful to your health, so not only will you look young, you'll look young longer.  I've always been very small-chested, so this rule has served me exceptionally well.

I do have a 'panic weight', too.  But it's sort of a by-product of the above rule, sort of a double-impetus to revise eating habits and burn more calories when I get on the scale and...panic.  :)  And I haven't let anything be an excuse.  Not pregnancies, not being laid up by car wrecks, not being overworked or overstressed, not health problems, nothing.

Lots of people are older than me, but seem much younger than their age:  JLo, Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston, etc., etc., etc.. But you do not have to be a megastar to stay young.