The Fountain of Youth and You

The Fountain of Youth and you

- By Sabatino Verlezza

If the Fountain of Youth really did exist, someone surely would have found it by now. Explorers and adventurers have searched all over the world for thousands of years and nothing has sprung up. The famous myth suggests that if you drink from the elusive and mysterious fountain, you will forever retain your youthful vitality or stop aging altogether. For thousands of years, humans have sought to find, bathe in, and drink from this legendary and curative spring. As we all “get on” in years, staying young seems to be an inevitable quest.

But maybe it doesn’t need to be. Perhaps, we don’t need to travel to far-away places, conjure up spirits, or mix questionable potions to sustain our youth. We may not need to find that special spring to put a spring in our step. The quest can end right now. In truth, the quest need not be quested at all. And to be clear, there are no strings attached to this sudden course change. To follow this new path, there are no asterisks referring to elusive footnotes written in impossibly small print disclaiming that you must hand over your first-born in order to receive safe passage. It’s free. In fact, the restorative powers of that famed fountain are much closer than they appear.

Just take a look in the mirror. Each and every one of us carries a Fountain of Youth in our own bodies. The search for staying youthful ends at our own doorstep. Truly, we never even needed to journey from our home in the first place. So how do we access this personal spring of energy? Movement. Simply move more. By moving, we bring new oxygen to our cells, rid impurities, expand our range of motion, and literally revive our bodies. When we move more, when we laugh, push, pull, reach, twist, dance, meditate, make art, and play bocce more, we make better what we already have.

But how do we move? What do we move? Well, it can be as complex as a gymnast jetting across a diagonal. It can also be as simple as taking a mindful stroll in the park. Dancers say that movement is life and life is movement. The acts of flexing, stretching, folding, spiraling, and arching the body all maintain and even regenerate some of our present youthfulness. After all, the present moment is all we really have. What’s the alternative? Well, yes, rest is equally important but maybe save the couch as a reward for later. 

The human body is designed to get older. Aging is a fundamental and natural part of human

bioengineering. Living is changing. These changes, however, do not necessarily need to mean a loss of youthful energy. Science shows that engaging and moving the body can stave off aspects of aging. If you “listen” to your body, it will tell you that it needs to move and that it wants to replenish and heal itself. Movement is indeed another kind of sustenance that our bodies require. After working out, even in a small way, your mind and body actually thank you with feel-good endorphins of gratitude. You may even feel like you have more revitalizing energy coursing through you than before. 

Even the act of simply “sensing” your body is a muscle that when strengthened, creates energy. By mentally participating or sensing what your body is doing in a movement, you can make better choices along the way that reinvigorate you. Sensing can simply be correcting or enhancing a motion like being more mindful of your alignment, relaxing the tension in your shoulders, or breathing through the effort of a movement. This awareness and intentional approach to moving can make a workout much more pleasant and rejuvenating. 

At this very moment, we are the youngest and the oldest that we are. Yesterday is gone and tomorrow is not here yet. This is it. There’s no better time than right now to tend to and sustain our present youthfulness and present age. We are the Fountain of Youth right now.


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