How many of us in the Fitness World have often asked ourselves why we weren’t getting the results we wanted although we were certain we were doing all the right things. If this sounds like you, I can understand, feeling the same way many times. As a Coach and competitive athlete for over thirty years I am always looking for that “edge”. I am continually studying everything in nutrition, strength and psychology (Human Behavior) looking for that edge for myself and my clients. A few years ago as I was working with my Coach on an electrolyte problem I was having, I swerved into an area that grabbed my attention and changed everything. Being Alkaline. With my business focus being challenged populations, primarily those who I call “Beyond Boomers”, those who are beyond age 65, actually the average age of my clients is 80-85. I needed to have a solid grasp of this concept before I would feel confident to share with these special populations.
As a competitive Triathlete I proceeded to get myself alkaline. I used a very simple plan. I drank lots of water. But not just any water. It had to have a PH of at least 8.0. I also had to have a way to measure whether it worked. So being a good scientist I proceeded to eliminate my supplements that I had been using as buffering agents during training and replaced them with the water. It worked! I felt better. I was stronger and I was able to recover quicker from my workouts. I now felt it was time to share my knowledge with my clients.
The first goal I have with a new client is to get them to start moving. After that is accomplished and we are establishing a training program or new activity, I then look at their nutrition. Now I need to remind everyone that I work with very challenged individuals, many having suffered very traumatic injuries, brain and spinal cord. For this article I am going to focus on Beyond Boomers which again their average age is 80-85. An important and often overlooked fact with this group is that as we age we lose taste buds. But we don’t lose our taste for sweets, which is why a lot of our Beyond Boomers have a difficult time with nutrition. The food has to taste good. I believed I had found at least a partial solution to the problem. I had a place to start. Plain old water. Let me make a couple of points here. First it is very common that our Beyond Boomers are challenged when it comes to hydration. They just need to drink more. Second, remember it has to taste good. The goal was to introduce a more alkaline water. Most water is acidic which means it is less than 7.0 on a scale of 1-14. Although this will help with hydration, it won’t allow for maximum health. This is the goal, maximum health and performance. Just by drinking a more alkaline water anyone could quickly start to feel better and have increased energy, as I experienced in my own training.
How is it possible to achieve increased energy and strength through alkalinity? Some of you have probably been aware of the importance of keeping our bodies more alkaline, which has to do with your bloods pH Ideally we need to be at 7.3 on that scale of 1-14 which I previously had mentioned. Your body will do whatever is possible to maintain 7.3 pH This can weaken you. This is where drinking water that is alkaline is important. A more alkaline water can solve two problems at the same time. Proper hydration and being alkaline. Next, remember how I shared with you about those taste buds. The water must have a good taste to it. So to this point if we can get people to drink quality water we can begin to positively influence their health. If you want you can test your own pH with special strips from the Drugstore or a Health Food store. This gives you a baseline, but the real test is the results.
Benefits of Being Alkaline
Some of the benefits that are gained from drinking alkaline water and being alkaline are
- Increased Energy
- Increased Strength
- Improved Metabolism
- Improved Immunity
- Improved Fat Loss
- Feeling Better
- Improved Bone Density
Although all of these points are huge with Beyond Boomers, it’s important for everyone. Who would not want the benefits presented here?
Results from Being Alkaline
Let’s Look at these benefits and begin to appreciate the results of having more energy, such as providing you more time to do what you enjoy. Just think how important this is for our Beyond Boomers. With improved strength from having less muscle fatigue you are able to exercise more often, at an increased intensity because of being able to increase the time or resistance of your program. This then relates back to being able to do what you enjoy more, such as golf or other activities, at higher levels of performance. Which will then create a positive, emotional relationship to exercise and you will feel better.
Because I believe that being strong is the most important fitness component for Beyond Boomers. (I really believe it applies to everyone). I want to highlight this benefit. By being strong this population’s entire world opens up. They have no limits and now can find a purpose and go after it with physical certainty. Lastly by creating a healthier body with stronger bones and muscles, people have less health issues, which creates an incredible psychological boost. Being sick or injured is not fun at any age, but is devastating at this age.
Although many in the mainstream medical community may have problems understanding the concept of alkalinity, there has been good research that we should investigate for ourselves, as I did, by such individuals as Dr. Neil Solomon, Dr. Sang Whang, Dr. Alex Guerrero, top Endurance Coach, Joe Friel and many others. Remember what we in the fitness and athletic community are most concerned with is performance. When you can measure the effects on your own performance as well as others you coach, it becomes an undeniable and powerful component of your peak performance program.