Hello my fellow runners and BMR family, I hope that all of you are well and your decision to embrace a healthy lifestyle by running is making huge positive changes and gains in your lives.
As I like to say…run hard, run smart and keep running.
On that note about “keep running”, I would like to share my observations and opinions to try to develop a correlation between two different concepts: action or lack of action.
I recently competed in a couple of local 5K and 10K races in Atlanta. I was able to finish overall number one in the 10K, second place in the masters group for the 5K, and first in my age group for another 5K. As I walked over to receive my medal and check out the 2nd and 3rd place times I noticed a trend that I assumed was the norm. A lot of the finishers in the top 35% and top 25 – 100 runners in every race were between the ages of 35 to 45. Sure, there were young runners (ages 17 – 25) and elite runners that took the overall prizes and finishes but for the most part the age demographic for the top finishers remained the same with older (experienced ) runners finishing consistently in the upper 35% – 50% of all runners. So I asked myself why this is, and I came up with a number of conditions that could explain the relatively high percentage, but I’ve narrowed it down to three things:
1. Investment (Put in now, withdraw later)
– Simply starting
– Understanding the returns
– Contribute regularly
– Contribute steadily
2. Commitment (Maintaining your health is a fulltime commitment)
– Making the lifestyle change (BMR is the first for a lot of us)
– By committee. (Competing in sports or other activities that require good physical fitness from childhood to young adult.)
3. Time (Having time to run)
– Being senior on your job, your company or career gives you time.
– Having older kids gives you time. (Running while they are otherwise occupied gives you time.)
The list above is not the definitive reasons for success for older (experienced ) runners but I believe they form the triangle of success.
After talking to guys my age (45 years young), the consensus is that they believe Investment is the most important factor, and most of the responses I get suggest that an investment of your time and a commitment to invest in ones health is no different than investing in your 401(k).
Now we have all heard that the sooner you start putting money in your 401(k) and maintaining a COMMITMENT to add a steady if not maximum amount over TIME the better you are when it comes time to withdraw for your retirement. This is true for the most part and most financial advisors will agree the numbers pan out in long run. I know there are no guarantees in anything and markets go up and go down but you increase your chances of success by following the proven method.
I maintain that the same is true for older (experienced ) runners and the success I have witnessed at races of all distances. A lot of runners (as well as bikers, swimmers, etc.) will tell you they have been at their respective sport for a decent amount of time. All the people I have talked to will say they have taken time off for a number of reasons such as health, family, career and other major life moments but those that are committed make time and come back to what they know. That is an investment in one’s overall health that will yield dividends by possibly increasing the length and quality of life as we get older.
Like I stated before, nothing is guaranteed in the financial markets and the same is the true for your health but I say following a proven method of taking control your diet, exercise and stress levels will pay off when it comes time to make a withdrawal in our golden years.
I would agree that everyone’s mileage may vary with the triangle I laid out above, and yes, being young and naturally physically gifted are major factors (elite athletes) but the law of averages say that if you apply the triangle of success with hard work you tip the scales of good health in your favor.
I will be the ripe old age of 46 soon but my fitness goals are not measured week-to-week, month-to-month or year-to-year. I look at my health in the decades to come and I choose to:
1. INVEST in Black Men Run, others that share my lifestyle ideas and me for as long as I can.
2. COMMIT to not letting a day go by that I do not evaluate how I am living and how I want to live.
3. To use the TIME I have wisely and respect the fact that I cannot get back what is wasted.
With all that said it is never too late to start.I welcome any comments and feedback and I thank you for allowing me to serve as your CMO. #blackmenrun
Edward Walton – [email protected]
Chief Motivation Officer