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Too old for adventures ?

I am not getting any younger. At the age of 32 , it seems like my life is almost over. Over for ... adventures, "extreme" sports, new activities, seeing new places ( backpacking through Europe ? I don't think so ), getting out of my comfort zone. It's getting harder for my body to recover after intensive work outs, long backpacking trips, hours on the ski slopes...

How often have you wanted to try something "crazy, outrageous, exciting " like whitewater rafting/ kayaking, surfing, sky/scuba diving, bungee jumping ? And what was your excuse ? :
"It's too dangerous "
"You have to be a professional to do that "
"You need to be in great physical shape"
"You need hours/ months/ years of professional training "
"I am too old"

You can't teach an old dog new tricks. Or can you ?

Meet Doris Matyasovich. She is a competitive MTB ( mountain biking ) racer, 2003 DH Masters World Champ, 17-time Masters National XC Champ. And she is only...67 ! She started racing at 45 and has stuck with it for the past 22 years. She raced BMX, XC, downhill, trails, dual slalom, adventure races ( 12 and 24 hours long ! ). Sometimes, she raced women younger than her children, or raced with men her age. She is also, the author of " Don't Tell Me I Can't " - a book about her life in the world of amateur mountain bike racing, and her answer to those who have ever told her she couldn't or shouldn't do something because she was a girl, or because she was too old.

People like Doris, really inspire me. I've read stories about people skiing way into their 80', doing their first skydiving jump at 100 (!), summiting Everest ( Min Bahadur Sherchan from Nepal reached the top of the highest mountain in the world at age 76) , sailing around the world after being retired...

After reading stories like that, you realize that age is just a number. Afterwords, as they say : " You are only as old as you feel ". So, feel/think young! Schedule that rafting trip, learn how to scuba dive, ride a mountain bike, go trekking/backpacking in Nepal ( Europe, South America...), climb a mountain ( doesn't have to be Everest), sail your boat around the world...

You can read the full interview with Doris Matyasovich here.


James L. Moore said...

My sociology professor and mentor at Prescott College told me, "The only difference between a groove and a grave is the depth..."

Life's responsibilities begin to crowd out spontaneity and adventure as you age, but it doesn't have to continue unabated as Doris proves and as Harriet Bullitt proved when she ran her first marathon at the age of 64.

Don't get caught in the groove and lose your sense of adventure...ever.

Casey Knopik said...

Great post Paul. And you are so right. You're only as old as you feel.