Olympic Pentathlete Tom Lough on the Benefits of Staying Active

Olympian Tom Lough may be 75 years old, but that doesn't keep him from remaining active. Listen as he discusses his workout routine and explains how each of us can benefit from remaining active. 

Read Tom's story from the June 2017 issue of Guideposts!

My name is Tom Lough. When I was 26 years old, I competed in the Olympic Games in Mexico City. Now I'm nearly 75 and I'm still active in running, particularly in the National Senior Games. To me, it's a real inspiration to go there and see people even older than I am so actively competing and training and helping each other. So that's where I get my motivation, my inspiration, from these older athletes who are still active and competing.

I run three or four times a week, maybe a couple of miles, maybe three miles at most each time, and I use the walking trails and running trails nearby. I try to get a good combination of endurance training and speed training, so that by the time the race that I'm training for comes up, I'm ready to go.

Running really helps me in many ways. It helps me keep my weight under control, and it helps keep my doctor happy because my blood pressure is usually pretty regular and in a normal range. One of the most important aspects of my running is a meditation time, time to think about life, nature, the beauty of the world around me, and it's a chance to thank God for all of the blessings we have.

I think it's during these times when I'm running I also get some wonderful service ideas for some of the things that I'm doing, related to my church work, or I can pretend I'm in my race and I hear the cheer of the crowd in my mind and really get all pumped up.

Each of us is different; each of us has a different body and it evolves and ages in different ways and rates, but for anybody who can still move, I invite you -- I encourage you -- to think about getting some sort of a regular exercise program--in consultation with your doctor, of course. Because to move is to live, and even if you have to have assistance in some way or another, it's still a very important thing to do, to get a sense of independence, get a sense of self-control and get a sense of being able to do something that you enjoy doing and want to do. And who knows? You may even be a source of inspiration for others see you running.

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