Upon approaching his hundredth birthday, film mogul Adolph Zukor remarked, "If I'd known how old I was going to be, I'd have taken better care of myself."
Boomers, on the other hand, seem to be obsessed with taking care of themselves-maybe even to the point of self-destruction. Boomers have grown up-and older-with the mindset that they ought not be held back by limitations. That and the idea that everything can be fixed. (Maybe it was all those episodes of Six Million Dollar Man or The Bionic Woman.) Boomers defy their bodies' limits, thinking that replacement parts are just down the street at the Joint and Ligament Warehouse.
John Hobby is a runner who reluctantly admits he's fifty years old. ("I never thought it would happen to me!") Hobby has battled knee and foot problems after a lifetime of participating in sports. But despite the "technical difficulties," he won't give up running. He loves the feeling he has after a run. "Everything's cool," Hobby says.
We all know that exercise has benefits both psychological and physical, but how much is too much? Clinical psychologist Lisa Cohen and Robert Gotlin, a sports medicine specialist, offer their insights. "Boomers don't recover as fast as a younger person," Gotlin says. And that, friends, is one of the facts of life about the accumulation of miles on the old chassis.
And if rationalizing is the only exercise you get, perhaps all this makes the case for full-time potato-ing on the couch.