Share this good news with everyone: Lifelong exercise may indeed be an elixir of youth. A data review that looked at masters athletes and the relationship between lifelong endurance exercise and age-related physical decline suggests that if exercise levels are kept consistently high across the life span, typical age-related decline may be slowed. For example, lung and heart function, the blood’s capacity to carry oxygen, and capillary density in skeletal muscles may remain robust over the years. However, consistent physical activity does not alter other factors, such as the age-related decline in maximum heart rate.
The findings were published in Sports Medicine (2020; 50 ).