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Sunday, April 2, 2017

Maybe I'm Not Really A Bad Writer After All?

This post from 3 years ago inspired me today even though I don't remember writing it at all.  

Beware of Science That Tells You Absolutes
 
 The news that running long distances just might shorten your life has hit the running world with a resounding thud. But I have a perspective on the science behind it, and a reason to not worry so much.

If you actually read the paper, runners (and heavy exercisers) actually do live longer than the non-runners, with some notable caveats. But the question shouldn't be, "Should I run a lot so I can live longer?" It should be, "Do I enjoy running enough to let it shorten my life?"

Someone who runs or exercises extensively throughout their life AND doesn't enjoy doing it, just so they can live longer, has a fool for a Life Trainer. As someone who spent a large proportion of their time in Nursing Homes in his early career, I can tell you that I think NOT RUNNING extends your life. And a miserable life it can be!

 Jim Fixx had it good compared to the thousands of people I have witnessed languishing in a situation they do not enjoy. It turns out that the authors propose that running up to 20 miles weekly is the sweet spot for life extension. After that, the diminishing returns begin in a rather steep curve. As I look back on my last dozen years running, I see my average is almost exactly 20 miles weekly. So I have that going for me. But if I wind up in a Nursing Home without family or friends, blaring Meat Loaf's Bat Out of Hell  or Paradise By the Dashboard Lights, I'll have run all those miles in vain.
  Posted by skwilli at 8:37 AM

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