Younger Next Year: Live Strong, Fit, and Sexy–Until You’re 80 and Beyond by Chris Crowley & Henry S. Lodge, M.D., 3/5
Clearly, the target audience for this book is aging guys who will appreciate the old-fashioned generalizations and cringey humor that make Younger Next Year pretty unrelatable to anyone else. Fortunately though, you don’t have to be an old man to be encouraged by the premise that consistent exercise, smart eating (but not “dieting”), and healthy relationships can make old age a less terrifying prospect. This book also confirms something I’ve suspected for a long time–that we often associate increasing age with loneliness, misery and a sedentary lifestyle because those are the most available and memorable role models (thanks, negativity bias). All the healthy, adventurous, active, passionate old people are too busy out doing things to stop and convince us that a post-prime life can be amazing.
On a sad side note, I learned that the younger co-author, Dr. Lodge, died at the age of only 58 from prostate cancer. I’m tempted to conclude that one shouldn’t sacrifice happiness for health, since the latter is never guaranteed.
Why I read it: my dad gave me a copy because he enjoyed it.
The authors are passionate about their topic but I feel this book contributes little to a discussion that is already very much lacking in scientific research and consensus among experts (or at least was in 2012, when it was written). In an approach reminiscent of the average college essayist, Larson and Katovsky cite a steady stream of inconclusive scientific studies and often-contradictory information that they do not have the expertise to interpret. Slap on some weak conclusions and the reader is left with a few interesting facts and no real guidance on how to apply them.
Why I read it: My dad mentioned it in conversation.
Inman’s reasons for running may be much more terrible and wonderful than my own (just as his conception of “long distances” is much longer), but a lot of this hilarious book resonated with me. On a side note: I’ve never read a collection of comics containing more illustrations of Nutella.
[Why I read it: I enjoy Inman’s webcomic, The Oatmeal, and this book came up in conversation with one of Dad’s coworkers. I’d actually almost bought it in a store just a few days previous before remembering that 5 Very Good Reasons to Punch a Dolphin in the Mouth was collecting dust on my shelf after being read just once. I hit the library up instead, which I guess makes me a bad fan.]