Tag Archives: Life expectancy

Take that, Peyton Manning!

Palmer and Peyton Manning 10/29/2006

Peyton Manning is bringing his star power and charitable works to the Rocky Mountains. Hey, Peyton, how about a challenge run for Engineers Without Borders? (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have to admit to being a bit upset by all the fuss being made over Peyton Manning’s move to Denver. When I moved west almost two years ago, there wasn’t near as much ruckus raised … and I came from Maryland, which is a heck of a lot farther than Indiana. It took us three trips to drive all our junk out here and there weren’t any TV cameras waiting for us at the end of any of them.

The thing I don’t get is why football players are put on such high pedestals. Yeah, they get a lot of money to play a game, but I don’t see why they are considered to be such great athletes. Oh, right … it’s because most of them could probably break my skinny 5′ 8″, 150 lb body in half.

But you know what? I’m 55 years old and I’m already nearing the average life expectancy of an NFL player (58). I’m also imitating Joe Namath (one of the guys who has beaten the life expectancy odds) while I GUARANTEE that I could run any one those great athletes currently on an NFL roster INTO THE GROUND! I’m not saying that I could’ve done it when I was in my prime. (Ha! As if I ever had a prime!) I’m saying that, even with arthritic ankles, Achilles tendonitis and two decades more under my belt than most of them, that I could do it today.

This is a short pause for a serious question or two. Why do we glorify a sport that pretty much assures that those who participate are cutting decades off their lives? Are they paid so much because we know what they’re doing is going to result in an earlier death?

Okay, back to it. On April 28, I’m doing the Run Josh Run event in Laramie, Wyoming—24 hours of running. My game plan is to make it 118 miles in that span of time, but I’ll be more than happy with an even 100. It is the off season for NFL players and I’m challenging them to join me for a few hundred laps around the track. I know they are all scared stiff of a 55-year-old leaving them broken and moaning on the infield, but it’s for charity!

Come on, Peyton! Since you are a newbie to the rarefied air of the Rocky Mountains, I’ll even give you a 20-mile handicap.

If you can’t make it, how about chipping in a few thou for a great cause? Engineers Without Borders helps poor communities around the world develop clean sources of drinking water, improve sanitation and many other critical engineering-related needs. These projects are vital for stabilizing the social and economic frameworks of the countries involved. The global economy benefits when third-world communities become self-sufficient. Put some of those NFL big bucks to good use.

Even if you aren’t an NFL star, you can make a big difference. Please click here to lend a hand!

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