Extreme Fitness For Life

Pullups - taken during a photoshoot on my 54th Birthday.

Extreme Fitness After Age 50 - and After a Hip OA Diagnosis!

I lost a decade to osteoarthritis, but the things I learned while battling to get my life back have, ironically, put me in a better position than many people of my age who don't have an OA diagnosis. The muscle imbalances and atrophy that play such a huge role in the symptoms of OA are equally involved in much of the physical decline associated with aging; if you can develop the knowledge, awareness and tenacity to combat hip OA, you will be well-equipped to take your fitness and performance to the highest possible level after your imbalances are corrected.

Now in my fifties, I'm taking on advanced calisthenics goals such as flags, levers and muscle-ups - exercises that are challenging even to fit twenty-year olds. I'm combining this with bodybuilding and general strength development to reverse age-related muscle-loss, and using twice-yearly fitness photoshoots (my husband is a fitness photographer) as a focus for my training, and to document my progress.

Over the coming years I plan to develop all aspects of fitness to the highest possible level. With everything I do, the overriding goal is the attainment of good bio-mechanics. I intend to undo all the damage caused by a lifetime of misuse and abuse and restore my body to perfect function - and keep it there for life!

The bottom line is this: if you can see your OA battle not as a life-destroying curse but as a long term endeavor that will ultimately put you in a better place than others of your age, you'll be adopting the mindset of success.

There's Nothing to Stop you Embarking on Your Extreme Fitness Journey - NOW!

I didn't wait until I was fully recovered before getting involved in fairly extreme sports and fitness activities. Whilst still suffering badly from OA I continued practicing karate for a while. I ran, indoor cycled, hill walked, hill ran, sprinted, Olympic-lifted, power-lifted and practiced calisthenics skills such as pull ups and human flags. I was more successful in some things than in others! Some activities made me worse; some helped in my rehab; and while some did me no harm and possibly benefited me, in retrospect I realize I was extremely lucky not to get badly injured!

Hopefully my experiences can help you to avoid making bad choices and find a way to enjoy some really meaty fitness challenges whilst progressing your imbalance and hip problem in the right direction. There's a whole chapter in the book on 'The Role of Sport and Exercise' in treating Osteoarthritis. I plan to expand on that with blog articles over the coming months. In the mean time, head over to the forum and post your questions there if you need help getting started!

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Personal Bests and Outstanding Performances Could Still Be Ahead of You!