Good morning and welcome to the last weekend in October!
Man, and woMan, (given the times were are in…) how time flies!!
On that note, now that Tracy is yet again 35 and I am just five months shy of my 50th, getting older seems to be a daily occurrence, instead of something that will happen “tomorrow”. Wait, what?!?! Did I just write that I will be 50 the next time I celebrate Resurrection Sunday (a.k.a. Easter 2018)?!?! That can’t be me in the mirror! Can it? My father, gone now eight and a half years already, was Mr. Belott. Not I! And as an interesting coincidence, well maybe just to me, I will be 50 on the same day my dad lived his last full day before joining the Lord. No, he didn’t die on my birthday. He died, Monday, April 13, 2009. The day after Easter that year.
Anyway, while I was contemplating all of this “age” stuff, I began to realize that as our body changes and gets older, its nutritional and exercise needs change as well. Again, an obvious point. But knowing that professionally and experiencing it personally, are two very different things. So, while I can only speak for myself, there are many times that I foolishly wonder why I can’t eat the way I did, workout the way I did or look the way I did even just five years ago. Why can’t I eat two 4×4’s at In-N-Out for lunch and an entire Mulberry Street Pizza before dinner without getting ill, fat or both? Why can’t I bench 225 lbs. without warming up AND praying that I don’t get hurt?
The answer simply revolves around one word…METABOLISM. In its basic definition, metabolism is the process in which your body converts nutrients into energy. And, as you know, the more your body moves, the more energy is required to keep it going. You also know, that the more muscle you have, since muscle “feeds” on caloric nutrients, the higher metabolism or the more energy is needed to keep your body going.
There my fellow readers, is the “rub”. How much muscle can we expect to have, keep, lose or even gain as we age? While it is different for everyone, due to hormone fluctuations, after the age of 30, the majority of people begin to lose muscle mass. Now, granted, the reduction is barely noticeable, if at all, for the first several years. And now, with the advent of Hormone Replacement Therapy (a.k.a. HRT), suffice it to say that one may be able to stave off or even reverse muscle deterioration depending on the dosage taken. But let’s stay in the “natural” realm for now. So, at the age of 30 you’re basically exercising and eating the same as you have been for years, and your body begins to “substitute” a pound or two of muscle for fat every year. Now, without getting more sidetracked…no, muscle doesn’t convert to fat and certainly fat NEVER converts to muscle. One just replaces the other. And, before you know it, you’re “fatter”, “weaker” and “slower” than you’ve ever been.
“But why?” “I have been doing the same thing for years!” “Why the change?”
Exactly! You have been doing the same thing, but your body hasn’t been cooperating! It has been changing right under your nose…and skin!
You’ve been eating the same. Mistake number one. Because our metabolism naturally slows as we age, in order to maintain our weight as we get older, we need to decrease our caloric intake.
You’ve been exercising the same. Mistake number two. Because our metabolism naturally slows as we age, in order to maintain our weight as we get older, we need to change our caloric expenditure. Maybe you’ve been lifting and ignoring your cardiovascular training for a while. Well, now that you have less of the muscle-building hormone (testosterone), you are going to need to do more cardio in order burn some extra fat because you body’s ability to build fat-burning muscle has diminished a bit. Now, don’t neglect the weight training. While you won’t necessarily be able to lift as much or even as often as you had in the past, resistance training will still help you slow age-related “muscle-wasting” and is important to combat other health risks like osteoporosis and those indicated in Body Designs 151: Is your training frequency tuned for results.
So, don’t make mistake number three and do nothing. Be proactive and decide how your body will age before your body decides it for you. Understand that while human evolution from primates is fake news (another hot topic), devolution of the human body is a reality none of us can escape.
And to prove we all devolve, last time I wrote that we change the clocks back on 10/29. You guessed it! I was wrong…we FALL back on November 5th at 2AM. Sorry!
Anyway, it’s time now for, you guessed it…a peek on to Bill and Tracy’s dinner table. One side note. No not the table at 71 Above last night where we had the most amazing oysters, fried calamari and fish, let alone the view, but our nightly table at our humble abode. Well, our trusty wincalender.com says that Broccoli Rabe is a vege for November. Here is this Italian’s slight spin on one of my dad’s traditional favorites:
Bring a large pot of UNSALTED water to a boil. Lightly coat a large frying pan with some non-stick spray OR about 1/4 cup of freshly squeezed orange juice (NOT Olive Oil) and heat some sliced garlic until it begins to turn a golden brown (about two minutes). Add some red pepper flakes and “toast” for about 30 seconds.
Add the broccoli rabe (or just *broccoli if the “rabe” is just too bitter for you) to the boiling water and cook for two or three minutes. Drain well and add the *broccoli to the pan and mix well. Turn the heat to medium, stirring and changing the heat as not to scorch its contents. Do so for about 10 minutes or until the texture of the vege is to your liking and serve hot!
Thank you for reading and have a great day!