Dr. Helen

40 Is Not That Old

I like this WSJ article entitled “Stop Saying Tom Brady is Old” just because he will be 40 next week:

Tom Brady turns 40 next week, and the sports world is acting like a dog is going to win the Indianapolis 500.

Come on! It isn’t so crazy. Speaking as someone in his 40s, let me confirm that 40 isn’t that decrepit. It’s barely halfway to dead! Brady is undoubtedly special, and football is a dangerous game, but all around us, there are miraculous 40-year-olds who can still put on both shoes in the morning, who can download a podcast, who can make an emergency turkey sandwich at 2 a.m. and not wake the entire family. …

Tom Brady is going to be 40, and I think we should tell him the truth: he’s only getting started. Life only gets better from here. There’s fun, there’s family, there’s Viagra. If not, he can always lounge on the couch, eat a turkey sandwich and watch football. That’s good, too.

I’ve been watching a couple at the gym who seem to be well over 40 and who look to be doing Crossfit exercises. They are amazing and able to jump up on benches, which takes quite a bit of skill. I think people who stay in shape can be fine at 40 or after. This obsession with age is annoying and it keeps many people from reaching their full potential when society cuts off their value at a certain age. We all get old — what’s the point of making it harder with negative societal messages and restrictions?

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