It is very troubling to me just the number of men who turn in their superman cape in their late 30’s to retirement age. We give up, plain and simple. The trail starts going up hill; energy, abs and hair are a little harder to come by and we take the super suit off and take a seat. It’s not supposed to be this way and our families, friends and businesses are counting on us.
Men are succumbing to lifestyle disease and structural problems largely due in part to our health and daily health habits being not too high on the priority chart. Men die younger than women, have more heart disease and structural back pain than women; for this reason.
One of my daughters put this in perspective for me one upon a time when she pretty much told me she needed me to step up in my health when she expressed that she was okay taking care of me when I was older. Sucker punch to the gut! My 7 year old understood something that I wasn’t willing to face at the time. If I continued the way that I was going I was going to break down and my family, loving daughter, would have to take care of me. Worse yet, they wouldn’t be able to count on me to be fully invested the way I am right now. Where did she get this crystal ball wisdom? She observed her grandparents and other aging people in the community.
I also see it every day in my Fort Collins chiropractic practice; men whose health is breaking down rapidly to the point that they feel out of control and don’t know what to do. It doesn’t have to be that way and I want to give you two things to focus on that I believe will yield amazingly high dividends. I know that health is very intricate and there is more to it but if we are going to capitalize, let’s go big on the things that will yield the most return.
Be structurally sound
To be structurally sound we need to daily take care of our spine. The spine is the beginning of health and movement (more on that later). If it’s not properly taken care of, you won’t have the strength and energy for your hobbies, lifestyle and family.
I’m a good doctor and can have you leading at half time but what you do is what will win the game!
To do have structural stability I think that daily routines of spinal care are necessary. We teach so many different exercises because of this. Here are three of my favorite for the lower spine. There are so many more. I have noted over the years after caring for thousands of clients that those who create and keep a daily routine of spine health need me less and have fare less problems. Did I say daily? Because I meant daily. Interestingly men who do this are also the ones whose seem to be enjoying their hobbies more consistently.
Also, identify your habits that are breaking you down. These could be repetitive motions at work, sitting too much, unhealthy postures, exercising habits and so many more. If it’s sucking the energy out, making you grumpy or causing you pain; change it up somehow.
Lastly, get chiropractic. Get massage. Get physical therapy. Get whatever is necessary to correct the spine and nerve system problems you are having. We have helped thousands of men restore their health by correcting the spine and developing a daily home care routine that keeps it in place. It’s imperative that you have a comprehensive functional evaluation for the doctor to really understand what has to happen to correct your issue. Sometimes imaging like x-rays are necessary, but will reveal a lot of information.
Build your house and keep it
If you are structurally sound you need to build your house around it; that’s your muscle. Something starts to happen in your 30’s. You start to slowly lose your muscle mass. Your muscle mass is absolutely necessary because it will influence your hormones promoting health and longevity (think HGH, human growth hormone). As well, good muscle mass will enable you to enjoy your hobbies and fend off break down better than those without it. I don’t want to turn you into the Hulk and I don’t even promise six pack abs, but the mass has to be there.
There are a lot of ways to build muscle mass but hours of cardio is not what we are looking for. Weight training will get it done if you like being in the gym. But just because you are a dude doesn’t mean that you inherently know how to use weights. If you’ve never been taught, get a personal trainer. If you like group workouts there are many High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) offered a rec centers or gyms in your community. Prefer the in home solo routine? Try a Beach Body workout. I’ve totally got to give yoga its respect here. Even though you might be used to throwing hundreds of pounds around a weight room, yoga will make you more shredded, balanced and stronger than ever before.
There are so many ways to win in the muscle mass department so find something that you enjoy and do it.
I could go into diet, what you drink and your mind habits now but I really wanted to give you something to sink your teeth into. If you focused on just a few things at a time like structure and muscle mass I think you will have an easier time succeeding in discovering that you can stay that strong, vibrant, confident man you have come to know and your family and coworkers have come to depend on. The biggest thing, though, is why. Why does it matter if you are strong and structurally sound? For me the answer is my little girl that thinks she is going to have to push me in a wheel chair and take care of me some day. My why and commitment is to her and the rest of my family now and in the future; that my health will be the vehicle that keeps me engaged with them. Make good choices men.