April 10, 2008
Exercise Delays Old Age Fatigue

Exercise to prevent yourself from decaying into incapacitating fatigue.

Maintaining aerobic fitness through middle age and beyond can delay biological ageing by up to 12 years and prolong independence during old age, concludes an analysis published ahead of print in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

Aerobic exercise, such as jogging, improves the body’s oxygen consumption and its use in generating energy (metabolism).

But maximal aerobic power starts to fall steadily from middle age, decreasing by around 5 ml/[kg.min] every decade.

When it falls below aound18 ml in men and 15 ml in women, it becomes difficult to do very much at all without severe fatigue.

In a typical sedentary man, the maximal aerobic power will have fallen to around 25 mil/[kg.min] by the age of 60, almost half of what it was at the age of 20.

But the evidence shows that regular aerobic exercise can slow or reverse the inexorable decline, even in later life.

Research shows that relatively high intensity aerobic exercise over a relatively long period boosted maximal aerobic power by 25%, equivalent to a gain of 6 ml/ [kg.min], or 10 to 12 biological years.

Share |      Randall Parker, 2008 April 10 11:06 PM  Aging Exercise Studies

Assistant Village Idiot said at April 11, 2008 11:17 AM:

I don't wish to speak badly of aerobic exercise, but this 10-12 years you speak of is a bit misleading. Feeling fatigue at the rate of a person 10 years younger is not the same as being ten years younger. It is not the same as living ten years longer. It is not even the same as feeling ten years younger, as the ten-year accumulation of injuries (major or minor), losses, and organ-wear is still there.

Careful readers will note that the study took a proxy measure based on "relatively intense aerobic exercise over a relatively long period of time."

Keeping your zip longer is a good thing, but not everything.

Zeus said at April 11, 2008 7:47 PM:

Hey Assistant Village Idiot - You deserve a promotion!

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