Fitness Tips From An 87 Year Old

Keep on Exercising Running Walking Cycling

Bi-weekly blog updates about
fitness for Over-50’s, heart rate, exercise, and other fitness tips.

I’m Barrie. I’m An 87 Year Old Who Feels 48.

I live in North Vancouver and am passionate about being active and helping others.

Barrie senior stretching

I was fairly fit until February 6, 2020, when a car at speed reversed into me while I was walking. I was knocked out and broke 10 bones. Up to that day, I walked 10 km daily and weekly played tennis, worked out at the gym three times, and climbed the Grouse Grind twice.

Barrie stretching senior fitness
Several months later, I was to meet a brilliant young Kinesiologist, Taylor Romanchuk ( This is his mini-gym.
Barrie senior weight lifting

He is gradually transforming my body into the shape it was previously, along with extensive weekly therapies. I am dedicated to my recovery. At the present time, I am restricted to walking, hiking, tennis, and kinesiology.

Achievements So Far

Years of Training
Grouse Grind Climbs
0 +
0 k
Ironman 1987

My Activity Curriculum

Weight lifting for seniors

Age 80+: Grouse Grind, Fitness

After running some 50 000 km - not simultaneously! - two titanium knees compelled me to stop running, a sport which had avidly consumed me. Now I am restricted to walking, hiking, tennis, the Grouse Grind, and the gym.

Tennis and other fitness activities

Age 60: Tennis, Fitness, Running

I continued running and at the same time was introduced to the iconic Grouse Mountain in North Vancouver, a very popular challenging mountain climb. I have since completed this 2 400 times and hope to complete my 3 000th on my 90th birthday.

triathlons and ironman

Age 50: Triathlons and Ironman

At the age of 50, I entered my first Ironman triathlon in Penticton, British Columbia. After my second Ironman in the same city, I luckily qualified for the Hawaiian World championship, which I completed within 40 days of this. However, after 4 Ironmen in 2 years, I felt that there was more to life than the Ironman. I had a shot at golf, but it took me two years to break 90, and also took a lot of my time - I decided to play tennis and discovered a latent talent, being able to serve at 136 km/hr.

Running at an older age

Age 40: Started Running

I continued to play all three sports until my mid-40’s, when I discovered running. Within a year, I had run my first marathon. Soon after, I had a yearning for triathlons - the only problem being that I could not swim. My swimming tribulations are chronicled in my blog #6.

Playing team sports

Age 20: Field Hockey

One day in my twenties, I was asked to play field hockey in my home town of Blackpool (in Lancashire). I decided to try my hand at this new sport, and was hooked immediately, going on to play for my hometown team, College team, and eventually for North Vancouver - my home since emigrating there in ’65. I played for 25 years and also coached my Burnaby North girls’ team for 25 years.


Age 10: Started Playing Team Sports

Like all kids of this age in England, I joyfully played football(soccer) and cricket. I didn’t excel at either, but what I lacked in skill I more than made up for in enthusiasm. I spent every moment I could on the sports’ field. Often, I was chosen for the team at the last minute, but this did not deter my passion.

Senior Fitness Questions? Over-50 Fitness Questions

Senior Fitness questions

I strongly urge you to consult your family doctor before you begin an exercise program, particularly if you have not exercised for a long period of time. In addition, start slowly and gradually add more time and then intensity.

A generally accepted mathematical formula can be used to calculate this: 220 minus your age. For instance, mine is 220 – 84 = 136 bpm, which represents the highest number of times my heart can beat in one minute.

Always remind yourself that regular exercising will improve your quality of life, give you more energy and improve your physical functioning. One of the most exhilarating feelings is getting addicted to the post-exercise rush of endorphins – those little guys who dance around in your head and generate “highs”.

Caution: I have no illusions about being an authority on fitness. My blogs are about the experiences of a layman who has learned from a combination of expert advice, diligent personal research and personal trial and error – lots of errors!

Every minute of every day. Year after year. Decade after decade. Your heart is always working for you but are you working for your heart?

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