Hacking your “Real Age” RLAA- Real Life Adjusted Age

real age

Tests and Measures to calculate your Age

This is a big one guys, but it’s about your New You and a New Year.  It’s a test to see how well you’re living or failing to do so. Measurable factors that contribute to how long you’ll live!  

 

Men’s Health magazine has an article in the December issue entitled “Your Fitness Age”.  In fact, much of what I will express is from author Michael Easter as a part of this article.  I’m not trying to plagiarize and steal homeboy’s stuff here. I think it is genius and want to bring your attention to it.   I will add my flavor and twist and maybe a couple add on’s that I see greatly influence our true age – much more accurate both positively and negatively.

 

This is your new year, your call to reality blurb – you get to make 2019 whatever you want it to be despite anything that happens.  It your reactions to external stimulus that truly shapes our future so It’s time to step up and take the proverbial bull by the horns. (but that really happened!)    You’ll need to either get motivated or keep it going babe because, damn…you look freaking fantastic!

 

The idea here is beyond what you see in the mirror however.   Fitness age/True Age isn’t about abs and quickness and the ability to climb your house like a ninja – those are the by-products. Those tangibles are everybody else’s January resolution-type articles.     

 

Nope, this is about your MORTALITY, Gulp.  

 

We each need to do this, check our own MORTALITY every so often, at least yearly.   Much better than resolution and goals, (link) lets get some data!

 

I’m going to use Michael. Easter’s scale as well. This is more than Fitness age, but I love his setup and tools.   It’s fantastic and any push for me to change this by 10% and call it mine is futile – I’ll give him full credit. In fact, just go check out the article for deeper intel.  

 

So here you go – how long are you going to live comfortably?  No, it’s even more than that – that’s for old time doctors and mediocre life – This is bigger than that?    

How long are you going to kick ass at life and drink fully from the cup of incredible?   How is it, that some people see only the sunny side of everything and seem to have awesome following them around like a perfume scent.     Do you still have IT?

 

If you’re looking for a little FE this January to get you off your ass?  Here’s the nuts and bolts – you want to BE THERE for your grandkids wedding, but better is to be the old guy cool dude actually dancing, not clapping out of rhythm and not smiling like a buffoon with bushy eyebrows like Uncle Frank on Lampoons Christmas Vacation. That’s not good enough!    Nope,You want to be more like the cool guy from XX beer commercials, the most interesting man in the world -Full of class and style and experience because despite many many trips around the sun, you’re still young at heart and body.

 

And if  you’re not? – well, the amazing thing is all this stuff are things you can practice.    Mortality is how long you live, and I want you to live amazingly!

 

KICK START or STARTUP

 

So this can go two ways.   Either as a kick start and motivation during the year to improve, get younger and become multidimensional.  OR, as a start up – redo your life, reinvent yourself.

 

Screw New Year’s resolutions, this isn’t that – this is about living.    Goals suck!

 

Can’t do 28 pushups?  You can by the end of the year, that I’m sure.    

A mile jog seems too daunting?   How about jogging 20 feet? Can you do that?   Could you add, lets say, 10 feet a day to your run you think?  

 

You have gleaming golden boy abs but have 6-7 diet redbulls a day and haven’t seen  a leafy greens for three months?

 

How about this guy?…I see you in the clinic every day… You can run a 5:00 mile but couldn’t fight your way out of wet paper bag and have anxiety thinking about the bar at the gym.

I’m telling you all to get more well rounded because the science shows being extremely one dimensional gets you dead faster than you should.

 

The strong meat heads and the marathoners both die too early.   

 

For the unfit and pathetic, guess what, this is all negotiable -, you can practice and CHANGE.  Make yourself YOUNGER. Ponce DeLeon searched the Amercia’s for the fountain of youth while all the time having already internally possessed it!

 

Mortality is a multispoked wheel y’all – Fitness, diet, sleep, luck, balance, stress and a few sprinkles of “extra’s added in”  

 

TEST TIME

 

So first, lets get some data, a baseline –

 

Fitness   

Fitness used to be cardo and strength… that’s so 1999

 

I would now say fitness is best measures in a 4 prong stance

You should have

Cardio

Strength

Mobility

Power or explosion

 

Your workouts should reflect these 4 as well.

 

Cardio

Vo2 max – the gold standard of Oxygen utilization in exercise – It’s our first measurable because in nearly every “fitness study” over the last three decades it is their standard.

Go ahead get it done at the gym if you want but this article is going to focus on the easy method.  Humans are built extremely well for running and are genetically set for running moderately fast for long periods.   God designed you for this.

 

For ease and cost effectiveness just

Run a mile.

 

Time /  Age

7:20 = 25 yrs

7:40 = 35

8:00 = 45

8:40 = 55

Greater than 8:40 = 65

You called the fire department and pulled a DNF (did not finish)  = you don’t want to know.

 

Ok first caveat:   But what if I have issues…knee problems, hip surgery, 100 pound belly’s,  lame doctors who have told you not to run again, that kind of stuff. What if you lost a leg in battle?   I get it, there are ALWAYS factors in play and that’s why this isn’t an article on why running mile is THE factor in measuring lifespan and health.  Really, I get it. My wife has no ACL’s.

SO…either you score poorly and have to really amp the others things such as strength, diet, balance, stress and luck OR do what you can.    Could you run a mile to save your kids? Well? Could you. I never said anything about you becoming a runner and dedicating the weekends to 5K’s, I just suggested a mile as a baseline data point.   

 

Strength

– I write a lot about the need for strength as the human animal – you need this – there are so many great ways to measure strength.   My favorite and in the academic world as well as the NFL and USA track is the Force factor- you’ll want to check out the force factor used by Ryan Flaherty – he’s THE BEST in the world.  It’s the ratio of body weight to your hex bar deadlift max strength.

Too much, yeah, I can see that – so lets substitute something easy.

 

how about trying pushups – max out reps – one try.  This is what the Mayo clinic does and uses.  We’ll use this as well.

 

Pushups  

Reps   Age

28   = 25 yrs

21   = 35

16   = 45

12   = 55

11   = 65

Less than 11?    Dude..you should be able to do more than 11.  seriously , this is your wake up call. Fix this.

Ok here, say you bombed this and really do suck.  Here’s what the boys and I are doing with pullups this year, you can use this non-science for yourself in the pushup arena.   

We all have to do 10 pullups each day for the month of January.  If I can only currently do 2 then I have 5 sets of 2

Please tell me you can do 5 sets of 2 pushups!  Throughout the day. It’s next to no effort.

 

Through the month this will get easier until you can, in short time, do 3×3 plus one or 2×5.   Maybe by the end of the month you can do a whole unbroken set of 10.

Now, for the next month you have 11 every day.  Add one rep each month, next year at this time you’ll have 22 pushups to do every day.   Dude! Next year at this time you’ll be a push up machine.

 

Take the immediate results centered mind…the need to see tangible results right this second out of the equation and you have the ability to change EVERYTHING.   I’ve written before. In a year, I could move to a different country, learn a new language, dress differently and speak with an accent. I could grow a beard and change myself so much that in one year you wouldn’t recognize me if I bumped into you at Walmart.

you can certainly change the number of pushups you can do!

So back to strength – and Flaherty’s Force factor +

Hex Bar  1.75 body weight is his ideal.   I weigh 210 that equals 368 lbs!   

 

Mobility

Over head squat is Kelly Starrett’s standard and I agree.  I really had to put in time and work at this. The Asian squat was impossible for me ten years ago.  I was traveling through India with my wife and friends and would watch the ‘old dudes’ squatted down instead of sitting and I couldn’t do it.   It was impossible. My ankles, hips, knee and back could not physically get into that position.

So I fixed it.  You can too. This is what I’d ideally screen body’s with at my clinic but practically I can’t as 99% of Americans can’t do this.  Most can’t even “start” this position. But we need to, to live! C’mon, Billions of Asians are challenging you to do this right now!   

But let’s get the upper body in this as well because, you know, shoulders are pretty important for our quality of life.

 

Overhead squat 

 

Grab a bar, broomstick or pvc pipe and hold it overhead, squat to parallel.the-overhead-squat_

Can you do it?   

Yes?  Age = 25

Can you get to an asian squat? No bar = 35  asian squat

Can you raise your hands up over your head until you arms are no longer visible in your peripheral vision?   =45

Can you at least attempt an overhead squat and get, let’s say ½ way down? = 65

 

Coordination

I  like Get-Ups from Dr. Jordan Metzl –

Get Ups:  lie on the ground face up – now get up.  Start with ten points for lying down and you lose 2 points for every extremity that touches the ground.   One hand = 2 points

 

8-10 points = 25

6 = 50

4 = 60+

Rolling over onto all fours and then building yourself back up – no good

“I’ve fallen and Can’t get up?”   = One foot in the grave

 

Balance

Turkish get ups are truly the standard and I agree with Easter on this (He lists these in coordination) but they just take time to learn and explain.   Here’s what I use clinically and for all athletes that I see.

Stand on one leg 30 sec (eyes closed) = 25 years old

Eyes open but for 30 sec. = 45 years old

 

There’s nothing else – you either can stand on one foot or you cannot.   You have to have this though or the science shows you will die in an accident more frequently than people that have balance.   If your older you may be concerned about falling and breaking a hip. “Balderdash!” I call, fix your balance so you’re not scared anymore.  Athletes!, Balance equals speed and speed wins everything! It’s one of the simplest things to change in your life right now with next to zero effort.   

I tell all my athletes to make it a habit to brush their teeth while standing on one leg – for ever. Put a rubber band or a hair tie on your tooth brush as a reminder.  Do this for ever.

 

Your chances of rolling and ankle, tweaking a knee and getting tackled 6 inches from the first down line all increase significantly if you can’t balance.

 

I’m going to drop just a little neuroscience here though for a sec.  Make sure you ingrain balance on one foot with the eyes open for about 2 weeks before you get to eyes closed.   You’ll be able to “hack” eyes closed but it’s not the same result as burning the pathways using visual cues first.   

 

Lifestyle

Nutrition

This may be tougher to measure age honestly because, let’s get real.  Adults eat and drink WAAAY better than youth. But metabolic age, longevity is what we’re rating so I’ll scale it.

 

First of all, just get an idea about nutrition already.

 

Old tired played out questions such as, salt is bad right?  Carbs are bad right? Should I put butter in my coffee. You need to just be better.   There is NOTHING simple and easy and one step in nutrition. However, It’s not hard either.

 

Do you follow a named system?   

Weight Watchers, Paleo, Keto, Primal, Intermittent Fasting etc?   And now be honest on how much you adhere to set system and if it really is decent food.   Questions such as?

How many servings of veggies each day? #1 factor

Sugars?  #2 factor – these are bad guys and are in EVERYTHING.

Good Fats  my #3 even before high protein.

Alcohol and cheating meals?   Just sayin’

Nutrition as a category is way too deep and I have dozens of articles on this so I’m not going to go for 20 minutes, again here.   Check my links if interested.

 

The diet scale:

Diet is freaking squeaky clean perfect 6 days out of 7 every week and I have veggies at every single meal and alcohol is quite low in intake = age 25

Diet is PERFECT at least 4 days in a row over and over again and I have no sugars = age 35

Diet is basically a modified Adkins and super low in sugars = 45

I’m trying to improve so have cut out sugars, but get confused in what has what in it?  = 55

Dude, I’m busy = 65 (most common excuse used in 25-55 year olds however – hows that extra 40 years feel frat boy?)

I’m past giving a shit = 70+

 

See here’s the thing.   I’ve spent some major time in this whole “BeAwesome365” thing and actually dig pretty deep into research and new findings and the healthcare revolution.  Especially in the last 6 months. And here is what keeps showing up no matter what I’m researching. Speed, strength, sex, sleep, stress, fat loss, positive mind set, rashes, disease, relationships, humor, LIFE…. They all improve with your diet.

 

 Nutrition isn’t just important – it’s EVERYTHING.  

If you don’t want to try all these aspects in the article this year – It’s just too much, change this ONE solitary factor and reap 80% of the benefits of a better life!

 

All aspects of life improve and all aspects of sickness decrease with a perfect diet.    Perfect. Yes it’s hard at first and it’s hard to digest internally because I push about how fantastic life is and to take it all in.  Our brains have been fried by 30 years of advertisements and a new LOW BAR standard that we think a triple bacon cheese burger and fries is “good food”  and that’s our version of living life to the fullest. That’s bullshit. It just is. Eating crappy isn’t living fully, or on the wild side or even fun.  

Hell, don’t tell me you get any endorphins waiting in line for 25 minutes at Chick Fil-A and on that point quit lying that a breaded chicken breast on a shitty bun and a lettuce leaf is healthy or even Healthier.   It’s crap. It’s convenient? That’s the excuse I use – it’s 830 pm and we’re just coming home from gymnastics, I need to get the kids something because i just don’t have time. BUT, the takeout line at Hunan express is still a 20 minute wait.  Pretty sure I could steam a little broccoli in that time but I don’t.

 

And I hate to do this, I know 65 year old grandmothers are cringing right now, but let’s just ask the question we should… Is that happy meal for the kids or that 24 oz latte and scone combo “sugar bomb” really any better than just skipping the whole damn meal?  

Yeah, we feel guilty if our kids don’t eat but seriously, are we doing our kids a favor?   I’m not suggesting your kids go to school hungry but I think the question of would a skipped meal be better for me or my kids compared to a McShitMeal is a valid debate.

 

Ask the question in the drive thru line.  Heck, just look around at the other driver’s in the drive thru line!    Is this better parenting or convenience? Ask, What’s better for myself and my kids?  Is convenience the winning factor today? I’m not telling you how to live, just suggesting some new questions.     

 

Our nutritional values have been duped to the point of us not even having common sense with our body’s fuel.

 

This we can fix.

 

Bonus points as nutrition done right makes you feel all warm and smug inside – like you have won the day.   And smug equals less stress and smiles which directly takes me to my next test.

 

Stress –

good and bad it’s still there and it’s real.  That it affects our lifespan is not up for debate.

You have kids?

Job?

Is money a primary driving force in your life?

 

This is tougher to put an “age factor”  to as we all have stresses in our lives at different times.   That super hot prom date was the real deal stress when you’re 17 ever bit as much as facing a bankruptcy is as an adult.   Stress is there – it makes us grow and evolve and adapt. OR it compounds and builds up and acts as a 100 pound burden on your shoulders.   

 

Because of this I’m not going to go all out on stress and say you shouldn’t feel it.   Impossible and hypocritical. In the same effort, putting an age on stress is counterintuitive as most of the 80-100 year olds I talk to tell me that by the time they get to that age – the stressors in their lives have been shown to be mostly self induced bullshit.    The experience of seeing life and death, joy and tragedy..of having a spouse and often times kids die before them – of being in love and having and losing money and houses and pets and cars and LIFE, multiple times, have shown them what is truly important in life. What they had always attributed too much importance to and therefor added stress is now deemed entertainment.  The experience of life accumulated and the ability to see life from a different perspective have changed their expression, so in one way being older could be viewed as advantageous. But, money issues, health, family BS and fear of injury and death has their own twists I’m certain and the number we are shooting for in this article is about younger years (25 – 35) being more optimal for longevity so here goes.

Scale of stress

I feel challenged in a good way 300+ days a year = 25 years

I feel like life is a mad rush but somehow exhilarating 300+ days a year = 35

I’m a grinder, shit has got to be done and I’m the person for it =45

I’ll never match up, something has GOT to change =55

Or I’m on a roller coaster of feeling super happy and great one day and overwhelmed the next =55

I’m depressed and unhappy =65

Life is f’ing overwhelming and crushing =75

 

Happiness

Happy people live longer – here’s the problem, you’ve been led to believe you need to be 10/10 happy like a screaming locomotive every day and honestly 7/10 is really good (link)

 

Happiness scale (at least 300 days/year)

 

1-10 with 1 being miserable and ten being euphoric

 

7/10 or better = 25

7/10 = 35

6/10 = 45

5/10 or less = first off, what’s up with that? = 65

 

The tricky part is do you really feel it or all you faking it, a mask of pseudo happiness is not real.

 

Also, this article is about things you can improve.  This isn’t like pushups – but there are some tried and trued methods to improvement I’ve written on a lot. (see smiles article)

#1 quick fix – accomplish something, no matter how small, we are hardwired for feeling a rush when we complete a task.

 

Extra’s

Love   (-5 to 10 years)

Do you have love in your life?    Give Love? Receive Love? Good, look up the you tube plant video about love – crazy..

 

Joy and Fulfillment

When is the last time you got the “feel goods” while watching the sunrise?  I drive over an ocean every day, it’s fantastic – there are over 30 species of birds I’ll see most days.  If you were visiting in December from Fargo, you’d have your mind blown with my morning commute. But to me – it’s routine.  I rarely drink it in nor enjoy it and that’s a shame. Find small joy in small things. If you’re a runner and love running, just look at how amazing your feet are someday.   Smell a flower, watch a kid discover something, touch a rock. The easiest and simplest way I’ve practiced and used in my life to just blast a split second of joy in is to use your senses other than your eyes.    

Sit down outside, close your eyes and go through your other senses.   Smell, hear, touch, and even taste. Did you taste your last meal? Not really, me either.  Let’s bring this back.

 

Play more games

 

Outside of family and work do you have at least 1 more “thing”  

Team tennis league

Gun club

Pick up soccer or surfing

Fishing

Your garden

 

See Jordan Peterson (12 rules of Life) talks about our life as games – as in, how are you doing in your family game?  How about the fame game? Work game? Health game?

 

The example he uses in Chapter #4 is a great one:  You know the young guy in the company that just got that sweet promotion and is killing it in his professional career?   Your at least a little envious. He’s ahead of you in the career game and despite how he got there he’s winning. But what if his wife is cheating on him and his family life is falling apart?   While you come home and have a fantastic wife and amazing family. Is he then still ahead of you? How about your favorite superstar actor that is making millions and had even more millions of fans, the envy of even other Hollywood A listers – but he’s got a drug habit that’s killing his soul and now don’t even have a person he can truly call a friend.    He’s crushing the fame game but getting killed in the relationship game.

 

Viewing aspect of life as games you’re involved in is actually about re-calibrating comparisons.  

 

The idea is – there’s a lot of different games you play – the more you have the better balance, the better mean or average or whatever you want to view it as.    Play more games. In fact play more and compare less. The title of that chapter in Jordan’s book is, “Compare yourself to your yesterday self, not someone else.”    It’s all about perspective and the more things you do ie: the more games you play – the smoother the sailing.

 

It’s too easy and devastatingly wrong to take one snippet, such as  “fame” or often “money made” and compare yourself to our neighbors and friends or even worse, to the World’s most elite.  Yet that’s what we do – we come up with this screwed and crappy version of “success” and then compare our self based on 1 aspect of this other person.   

(-1 year for each game you’re winning at)

There you go.    Your Adjusted Age – your Life AGE.   You have a year to improve this and drink in the benefits of a younger you, despite your birthday.

 

This is your year to make yourself better, not by lame goals to get you through the first 3 weeks of 2019 and then back to your crappy routine –  but to have a reason…a “why” to seek out changes and live longer and better.

 

My last piece of advice – I do much better if I have little daily snippets of a book or podcast.  Some sort of advice to keep my head in the game and motivate me to continually improve. It can be as simple as one paragraph in the morning.   

 

Use this website

Try out this book (aubrey Marcus) one of my favorite dailys

Mark Manson is a fantastic podcast I like.   His motivated this site.

Look at some of Tim Ferris’ stuff

Call a friend you have not thought of for a while

Use memes  – funny and often meaningful in exactly the sweet spot you need

 

Cheers to 2019 Y’all – It’s a Celebration!

 

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