I have been thinking about longevity and living functional in our later years of life for a very long time now and I love how Peter Attia, MD. looks at this idea.
Peter shares the idea of reverse engineering your last decade when he was a guest on Rich Rolls’ podcast. You can listen here.
I love the idea of asking ourselves what type of health and function we desire in our last decade of life!
Let’s say you’re planning on living between 90-100 years old. What do you want to be able to do in your last decade? Do you want to be able to pick up a child? Do you want to be able to go up three flights of stairs with ease? Do you want to be able hike five miles? Whatever you desire for your last decade, now’s the time to start thinking about it.
What do you want to be able to do in those ten years? Everyone’s list will be different but how we strategize our holistic, functional strength and conditioning lifestyle will play a major role in being able to perform the tasks and movements we desire for ourselves.
Here’s my list and as an example:
- Be able to travel with my wife and explore the world.
- Be able to hike long distances with relative ease.
- Be able to lift my travel bags into the overhead compartment.
- Be able to get up and down from the floor.
- Be able to ride my bike.
- Go on my camping trip with the fellas.
- Play a sport of some sort. Sounds like pickle ball when I’m 80-100 years of age!
- Be able to have sex.
My list goes on, but you get the point. Your list might have different challenges on it, but we have one thing in common: We must train smart, consistently, and consciously to achieve the functional balance, strength, power, posture, agility, mobility and overall elevated quality functional movement we desire for ourselves.
The point I’m trying to make is that how we take care of ourselves today might very well determine how much enjoyment we get out of the physical challenges that we will all be presented with at some point. Don’t let the little voice that says, “I have to exercise”, take you out of the game. You don’t have to do anything! It’s much more powerful, effective, and fun to take on the training for life mindset! This mindset empowers the subconscious to embrace learning about health, training, and secrets to longevity throughout your entire life and building on those concepts.
I can’t help but think this process of reverse engineering our last decade is directly connected to our legacy. The longer we live a healthy, strong, and vibrant life, the more time we have to create, teach and share for the generations behind us. This is part of how we help the planet and society flourish. When we live holistically and feel the benefits from the shifts in habits, we gravitate to loving all living things, eat more plant based, wanting to live more sustainably, being less ego driven and ultimately more connected to the one’s life.
Take a few minutes to get quiet and have a pad and paper. When you feel inspired, start writing down how you would like to live in your last decade. Share with yourself the activities you would like to be able to do and be as specific as you wish. Then, ask the question, do I currently have the information, knowledge, and wisdom to experience that last decade. Most of us and including me, will say there’s a lot more learn, discover, and apply to get there. That’s the fun part! It’s about the challenge of sometimes being uncomfortable but also nurturing our minds, bodies, and souls.
Give this practice a go and see where it takes you!