Senior Joggers Enjoy Youthful Metabolic Rate

Benefits of Running Later in Life




goodluz/Shutterstock.com

Scientists from the University of Colorado have determined that individuals older than 65 that run three times a week will likely burn oxygen at the same rate as a 20-year-old runner. Despite being more than four decades older, these runners spend a similar amount of metabolic energy as their younger counterparts.

Published in the American College of Sports Medicine journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, the study tested 15 older and 15 younger runners. Each ran a minimum of three times a week for at least 30 minutes each time during the prior six months.

The subjects were tested on a specialized treadmill that measured the force applied to the running belt. Each person ran for five minutes during each test at different speeds between 4.5 and 6.5 miles per hour. Regardless of running mechanics and technique, the older runners utilized their metabolic energy at a similar rate as the young runners at all speeds.

“Our prior research suggests that the muscles themselves are becoming less efficient. I think of it as your body is like a car. Your body has its own fuel efficiency, and what we’ve seen is that the fuel efficiency in muscles is reduced in older adults that are sedentary or only walk occasionally,” says lead researcher and Professor of Kinesiology Justus Ortega.


This article appears in the October 2016 issue of Natural Awakenings.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

Eco-Packaging Progress Report

Creative new options include carry-out containers made of wood pulp, baked-goods wrapping paper infused with antibacterial spices, and cardboard made of mushroom roots.

Ease Repetitive Strain Injuries

Any movement we do repeatedly, such as typing at a screen or keyboard, can cause muscle strain and injury, but the right kind of exercises can lower our risk and repair damage.

Kristi Nelson on Why Gratefulness Brings Happiness

It’s not happiness that makes us grateful, but gratefulness that makes us happy, counsels the head of the Network for Grateful Living.

Raw Fruit and Veggies Key to Mental Health

Eating raw fruit and vegetables correlated more with psychological well-being in young adults than eating canned, cooked or processed produce.

Eating Well Protects Hearing

In a 22-year study of 33,000 women, Harvard researchers found that a healthy diet can lower the risk of moderate to severe hearing loss by nearly a third.

Add your comment: