The title above comes from Rocky 2, which was uttered by Apollo Creed to Rocky Balboa as he invited the latter into the boxing-ring. These two variables are dipolar opposites, and have an inverse relationship to each other. Age increase, while beauty diminishes.
I have observed that in endurance sports, older competitors have beaten older ones – often by a large margin. Mind you, the older body does not recover as fast as a younger one. That is nature’s way of saying: Time is running out. Mid-life crisis, as is lived by most middle-aged men seems to be the point where men plunge into extreme lifestyle changes. It is not surprising that endurance sports like triathlons, marathons and fast-car driving are popular with that stratum of the population.
Does one get better with age? Comparing wine to people is one analogy. Yet, not all wines age gracefully, especially in a hot and humid climate. Vinegar is one by-product of aging (and oxidation).
In which ways do we age, with benefits?
1. Acquisition of wisdom (although it is finite)
2. Wider breadth of experience
3. Depth of knowledge in more subjects
4. More frames of references
5. Skillfulness (levels that are near mastery)
6. Aerobic fitness (ability to last physically longer, until fatigue sets in)
7. Maturity of thought
8. Enhanced reputation as a role model
Do you dispute with any of these?
By the way, congratulations to Joseph Ong who will represent Singapore in the 60-64 years age group for the Ironman 70.3 World Championships in Clearwater, Florida on 14 November. We wish him all the best!