Sunday, February 8, 2015

It wasn't that bad

Chris "Isorez" Rezny
Pierini Fitness is blessed to have Mr. Chris “Isorez” Rezny as today’s guest blogger. He’s a 50-year young middle-aged man cyberspace friend of the chief executive blogger.   

Chris resides in the Chicago area with his wife and two sons and pays the family bills working in corporate America as a sales manager.  To keep his middle-aged man body fit, Chris exercises using an eclectic approach including barbell weightlifting, calisthenics, "Isorez” isometrics and yes middle-aged man walking at a brisk pace.

His middle-aged man reflection today as a guest blogger shares his thoughts and feelings last year about this time.  Grab a chair, sit back, relax and enjoy what Chris has to share.

Last year about this time, I spent time reflecting that I would soon enter a new decade of life.  Then one day, I decided to take the rambling thoughts swarming in my mind about turning age 50 and capture them with written words for my down-the-road archival benefit.  

What follows is what I composed that day:

It’s coming . . .

As much as I have tried to convince myself it’s not true, I will be turning 50 this year.

So that means I’m still officially not 50 as I write this out but yes it lurks ominously around the corner.  But since I’m going to live to be over 100, I guess, I’m not really middle-aged yet?  Cool!

Reality check – yes I’m middle-aged and have probably fit that age bracket for the past few years.  I try to fool myself, like when I take a survey and check the box for 40-49 for my age and then privately crack a sly smile while patting myself on my back and thinking “Hot Dog!” at least I didn’t have to check the 50-59 age selection.

I don’t’ think there’s anything I’ll fear about turning the "BIG 5-0" but it still yanks on my brain and pulls on my heart.  Maybe I’ll creak more or walk a bit more bent over and memories might fade.

Man, I’ll officially be old. Me?  Nope, this can’t be!

Right now I’m struggling with different physical aspects.  One of them is that I have two high school athletes living under my roof that I lovingly refer to as my sons.  They’re both bigger than me!

The oldest one can put me over his head and bound up and down the stairs with me over his shoulders.  It’s a bit humiliating . . . but enjoyable all the same.

I’ve gotten used to being called “mister” and “sir” a long time ago just through youth coaching of baseball and football.  But now it happens in a store!

I’ve been asked if I need help “loading that” and this ticked me off; I kindly refused the assistance.  Then I remember when I was that young and probably would’ve asked the same question to an older man like me.

I do my best to keep in shape and structure workouts of resistance and cardio benefits at least four times a week if not more.  One of my favorites is when I focus on a good long walk at a brisk pace.

Six years ago I would never had thought that walking was a workout and at times my sons are ruthless in their side glance when I tell them what I did.  But the bottom line is I feel good and I don’t have pain afterwards. 

My one benefit is that I really don’t think I look “almost 50” and maybe I do look like a 16-year old kid when looking in my bathroom mirror like I know one person says he does.    I have the benefits of a smoother complexion thanks to my mother. 

Hey, I can pass for 48.  But do I look 50?  Heck no!  Do I turn heads?  Nope; I’m just being honest here.

However, this year’s "Turkey Bowl" football game with friends, and many more of my sons’ friends and their college age brothers, proved to be another telling point for me.  While I didn’t embarrass myself with four receptions and one touchdown pass thrown by “moi”, my knee hurt for three weeks afterwards from running and falling on the frozen ground. 

Yes sir – three weeks!  That there folks is called a “measuring stick”.  

I take a slight bit of pride that the amount of grown-ups dwindled as the game went on.  I hung in there with the kids but paid the price because my knee lingered in pain for three weeks afterwards before I could do a workout with lunges. That's enough of a tell-tale sign that my internal  honesty detector has been tripped.

I need to embrace it, look forward to it and find a high hill from which to shout.    

Hey I’m going to be 50!  Alright, did I just say that?  

Gee-whiz; what an embarrassing moment this is for an older guy.  Maybe I’ll just whisper it for now. Better yet, I’ll just keep it to myself for a while longer.

Almost a year has passed from when I composed the above.  I turned age 50 and embraced a new decade of life.   So I guess a postscript to what I composed a while ago is in order.

What can I now say about turning 50? 

I know!  It wasn't that bad. 

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum


Anonymous said...

Good to see Chris out on the web again. Always enjoyed his posts in the good old days.

But, let me suggest a quote from Dylan Thomas: "Do not go gentle into that good night". No longer a 30-something or that 40 dude, I continue to refuse to surrender to aging.

What I try or do isn’t always pretty, inspiring or even worthwhile in many cases. And there are days when I think back and wonder “why in the world I did I do that to myself”? But, if you don’t try…

At the same time, when I do go to a gym, my favorite thing to do is hit the incline bench press, warm up with a pair of 90lb DBs and work my way up from there. At Home Depot, I’ve offered to lift a heavy box a younger person was struggling with. At home I’ll do my deadlifts using moderately heavy (for me) poundages, pushups or benches, walk and run, and, I’ll enjoy long bike rides with my wife or alone on weekends.

I don’t won’t spin any superhuman claims regarding joint health or looking like Frank Zane. Instead, I owe my current ventures and results to a lot of reading and listening to the experiences and success of others. For example, Ellington Darden…how is he still training hard and looking great in his late 60s? What does super-coach Ben Greenfield advise for training and being successful? There are cutting edge MDs like Joel Fuhrman on PBS who give insights to the reversal of disease.

At the same time, I know my limitations. For example, I’m not about to head out to the tennis or basketball courts…my orthopedic surgeon’s already paid off his ski house in Vail and trips to Tahiti.

We may not be in our teens or 20s, but, there’s a lot to achieve. Tony Horton’s still inspiring in his 50s, Clarence Bass in his 70s and there was a Navy SEAL instructor who continued into his 50s, as I recall. The previously mentioned Joel Fuhrman regularly does high volume pushups & chins in his 60s. Ever seen a Mark Divine workout on YouTube? One more person re-defining what it means to be 50+.

Take on your 50s and beyond with wisdom and gusto and you’ll be surprised…

pierini said...

Well hello Anonymous and thank you for what has got to be the lengthiest comment ever here at Pierini Fitness. Very encouraging food for thought and a nice compliment to our guest blogger's share today.

Maybe one day you'll grace Pierini Fitness with one of your own guest mddle-aged man blogflections.

David, San Francisco Bay Area said...

Just read this post as I check Perini Fitness only every now and then.

I am 58 and when I turned 50 I decided to make a change. up to then I was the avaerage guy like others my age. But something inside made me change. I began to workout and eat better. I lost 40 pounds. I started going to a gym and working out at home.

Now 8 years later I am still at it and feeling and looking way better than ever. I have kept all the fat off and added on pounds of lean muscle. I go to Fitness Boot Camp 2-3 times a week, workouit at home with free weights and kettle bells.

Life is from that point of view is WAY better in my 50s than it was in the 30-40s. I am looking forward to my 60s to see how much more I can change and grow in mind, body and soul.

pierini said...

Thank you for your post David and your middle-aged man testimony of your health and wellness journey. If you enjoyed Chris Rezny's share about his new decade of life, then you may enjoy the next Pierini Fitness blogflection that will post on 2/18/2015 at 10:00 p.m. P.ST. It will be the first twilight post in its blog history.

Again, thanks for your visit and have a great day.