Growing Old Sucks — the remedy?
The day I turned 30, my back started to ache. And this feeling of discomfort isn’t just going to magically disappear.
If you are like me, looking for a little help, keep reading.
If I indulge in a night out, having pasta and a glass of red wine (or 3), I now feel the effects for the entire following day. And that feeling isn’t great at all. My eyesight feels compromised, my productivity levels are halved, and my focus gets replaced by a ‘goldfish-like’ state making my brain constantly seek distraction. My HRV curve looks like a rollercoaster and my resting heart rate is high enough to help with anything but rest. I used to just blame this on the alcohol. But glucose levels are also through the roof, and I spend the whole day trying to recover. But it’s not a rest day, so I ‘help’ my body bounce up and down by having caffeine and sugar. Brain fog is a natural bi-product of my workday, post-night out. In the early afternoon, anxiety kicks in, my heart rate goes up, and my productivity goes down, and down!
In my twenties, I used to do whatever I wanted, and it seemed like my body was simply invincible. While — truth be told — this has little to do with what was actually going on in my body, and a whole lot to do with my perception, I really want that feeling of ease back.
As a highly driven founder who is all about growth, this is bad.
But there’s a remedy. Bare with me, or scroll right to the end to find out!
Imagine how I am going to feel as a 40-year-old? Will I be capable of getting anything done? What’s my back going to do in my 50s? Will I be able to run (at all) in my 60s? And what about enjoying my retirement after that? At 70? 80? 90?
No thanks, I’m out!
The thought of growing old is not for me.
Does this mean that I don’t want to live as long as I possibly can?
In my 30s I want to become the fittest and healthiest version of myself. In my 40s I want to run my first marathon or an iron man and push my body to new limits.
In my 50s I want to give my (future) kids a hard time trying to keep up with my fitness level.
In my 60s I want to be capable of cycling for 10,000+ kilometers each year, just like my mentor Hansi does. In my 70s I want to start another business, work hard on my self and play soccer on the weekend.
In my 80s I want to take dancing classes, keeping myself healthy, and enjoying active evenings with my partner.
In my 90s…
When I am 100…
YOU’VE GOT THE IDEA.
Nobody wants to grow old for the sake of growing old.
We want to grow young! Nobody wants to just extend their lifespan for no reason. We want to extend our healthspan.
Change the way you see yourself. How?
By starting to optimize for longevity health. If you want longevity health you are in it for the long game. Every day? Every week? SURE! But even more important: Think about the next decade. And think about what it is you physically want to achieve 20, 30, or 40 years down the line!
So when I think about my future self I think of future Pete as an athlete. As someone who prioritizes health and fitness, future Pete wants to work for as long as he possibly can — he doesn’t want to retire, ever.
Make health your passion.
The Japanese concept of Ikigai is all about retiring from your profession, not your passion.
So what if health becomes your passion?
I am very close to reaching level 3.4 or as some call it: 34 years of age. I feel better than I did in my mid-twenties. I want life to be about upgrades, not downgrades, moving forward, not backward. And most importantly MOVING as fast and as long as I possibly can.
‘A body in motion stays in motion, a body at rest stays at rest’ (Sir Isaac Newton’s First Law of Motion).
So when I had my own wake-up call, my meltdown moment about 1 year ago I made the choice that from now on I was going to focus on health, happiness, and longevity.
My latest life upgrade took me from startup-founder building software used by millions, through a 2-year long journey of figuring out what’s next to finally understanding what it was that I was going to spend my life on:
My mission is to help founders to become invincible, by providing them with the tools they need to thrive physically and mentally, so they can reach goals that far exceed their wildest dreams.
Because the best way to grow a business is by turning yourself into an athlete. Tim Ferris has interviewed 200+ world-class performers including Arnold Schwarzenegger and Twitter founder Jack Dorsey for his Podcast ‘The Tim Ferris Show’ and concludes: At least 80% have a daily mindfulness or meditation practice, sleep is prioritized, so is exercise!
While I certainly can’t turn you into an invincible founder, I’d like to invite you to join our community at Span: A longevity coaching service that will help you to become 1% healthier each day.
Chances are, you already have all the knowledge it takes to be your best and healthiest self. But are you actually doing what it takes to get there? Are you invested enough to turn your body into the unstoppable machine you want it to be?
Pete is currently the Head of Growth at Span and a Partner at Gateway Labs