Read in a recent Globe&Mail article the following:
Researchers at the University of Valencia in Spain collected birth and death data on 834 cyclists who rode in the Tour between 1930 and 1964, representing the majority of competitors from France, Italy and Belgium during those years. They compared the data to average figures for people born in those countries in the relevant years, publishing the results in the International Journal of Sports Medicine. The finding: Median age of death was 73.5 years for the controls compared to 81.5 years for the cyclists, and the mean lifespan was 17 per cent longer for the cyclists.
In the context of the article, the implication was that the effect on extreme athletes. Thinking about the cyclists in the study who participated in the tour from 1930-1964, I have to wonder. In that era, cyclists would stop along the way at a bar for a drink when they got thirsty. However, the real implication is that serious determined exercise on a regular basis will have long term benefits.
Something to ponder as you smell the fresh cut alfalfa on your next ride. Oh – one more thing. The way Jim and Neil are outcycling each other, I think they will both outlive each other as well.