You’ve likely seen buff 80+ year olds running marathons, crushing records and doing amazing things that show up here and there on social media posts.
They either wow you or have you thinking… ok that’s something I’m striving for.
I aim to live into my 100’s and thrive so when I saw the documentary on the Blue Zones I had to check it out to compare my lifestyle with what these folks were up to.
(Check out the documentary series HERE)
Turns out I noticed some similarities between these healthy older folks and the blue zone folks.
What’s a blue zone?
A scientist researching aging made blue dots with his pen when he found a certain amount of folks over 100 years of age living in a certain area.
The Netflix series goes to some of those places to interview what these folks had in common.
Because picking up and moving to Okinawa, Costa Rica, Greece or Sardinia might not be an option…
… why not create your own “Blue Zone” habits right at home?
What’s the main take-a-way of the Blue Zone documentary that I think is relevant?
- eat closest to nature
- make your own food as much as you can
- stop eating when 80% full
- eat veggies (I do not agree with the vegetarian/vegan lifestyle for everyone – I want to be clear on that – the documentary pushes that hard)
- socialize with friends
- keep moving and challenge yourself to do different movements regularly
- socialize in general
- have a hobby
When I dive deeper into the lives of the fittest folks over 80 I find similarities…
They are doing the following…
- eating as closest to nature as possible
- not overloading their guts with food
- taking time to enjoy life and meet up to play a sport or game
- they eat more vegetables or at least drink green drinks
- keep up on their protein intake – meaning most get at least 75-80 grams of protein a day
- cross training – not doing the same thing all the time, many have gardens, farms or hobbies that involve a variety of movements
- understanding how much recovery they need and when
- putting in time for mobility work to grease their joints
- getting their body in certain heart rate zones to strengthen their heart
- optimizing their sleep and napping too
- getting together with a group of friends or getting out to chat in general – this is crucial for many older adults
My Dad is one of these guys who does all of the above.
He has a solid routine of meeting up with friends to socialize and I truly believe this is one of the main things that keeps him going!
His bar crew may be an interesting bunch but they genuinely care about him.
They give him hugs, ask him about his days and engage his mind in handyman or light building projects that he does for many of them.
If he doesn’t show up at his expected time daily, they will call me.
He’s 87 and going strong, because of them in many ways.
The Blue Zone documentary highlights community and socialization.
I would guess that few of the 80+ buff folks are isolated, they belong to gyms, or hobby groups that support their desire to live extraordinary lives.
This is huge!
My Dad tells me he likes going to the bar because his friends are younger and still active and engaging.
He does have 3 friends that are over 80 that meet up for coffee every morning and hang out in his garage with him to tinker on motorcycles, cars and whatever project someone has tasked him with.
These are precious friends to have.
Sadly, in the US, especially post pandemic, people are more isolated and lonely than ever.
This is a colossal problem that worries me and has me thinking this is one of the reasons why the average lifespan is declining.
I’ve seen the effects of this in my patients and myself.
It’s one of the reasons I continue to return to Tacoma regularly, I miss 1:1 connection with my patients and friends!
So I ask you…
…do you have a community or a source where you could find a group of like minded folks that would support you in your mission to be healthy for life?
These folks do not have to be an in-person group – it could be virtual!
I’ve got a little group going on Thursday nights.
It started as Hormone Case Study group and has turned into a weekly fun chat on all things health.
I look forward to meeting with the group each week and it has me thinking about creating a larger community.
If you’ve found me via my practice, social media or my podcast you know that I’m all about providing resources to live a healthy life but not only that, I aim to provide resources to tackle whatever adventures you have on your bucket lists.
I’d love to hear from you – what are you looking for in a community?
If you were thinking to join one for support when it comes to building strength mentally and physically so that you can achieve the adventures you have on your mind at any age – what type of community would inspire you?
Hit reply, I read and reply to all emails sent my way!
Have a great weekend!
Here’s to your health,