Weightlifting (2)

I have lifted weights most of my life, but running was, for many years, my primary workout. I ran ten miles three or four times a week until, some years ago, I injured my right knee and had to have knee replacement surgery. The surgeon botched the job and left me unable to straighten my leg completely and unable to run. Nor can I do leg exercises. So I depend on weightlifting using the upper half of my body to maintain my health.

Exercise is only one of the things I do to stay healthy. I stick to a diet of primarily fruits, vegetables, and soup, with an emphasis on beans and split peas. I drink lots of water and sleep as much twelve hours a day. Thanks to my time in combat where I learned to sleep whenever and wherever I could, I have become an expert on sleep—I’m better at it than anybody I know.

According to TheHealthy.com, one of the factors that can shorten life is lack of physical activity. As I look around me, so many of the people I see are overweight—one symptom of deficient exercise and poor diet. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the national public health agency of the U.S., reports that 41.9 percent of Americans are obese. I am at a loss to understand how so many Americans can go on with a lifestyle that will hasten their death.

But I am also well aware that healthy exercise requires time. Only the relatively well-to-do (like me) have the free time for working out. And statistics confirm that those with more wealth tend to live longer than those with less. If you have more money, you probably have access to better health care as well as more nutritious foods. But you also have the free time necessary for exercise.

Despite all my actions to remain healthy, I’m aging. Once upon a time, I enjoyed weightlifting to the hilt. But little by little, it is becoming more work and less pleasure. That said, I’ll keep it up as long as I can.

I like being healthy.

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