Male Over 50 Runner-Up: Dave Carpenter

Dave Carpenter started his workout regimen just a year ago, in January 2012.

It was a New Year’s resolution he says he was determined to keep.

Initially, he worked out five or six days a week on an elliptical machine for 35 to 40 minutes, and climbed six flights of stairs at his office three to four days a week. After the first eight weeks or so, he settled into a four-day-a-week, 42-minute routine supplemented with stair climbing at work.

“We live on an acreage with about 20 acres of trees,” he says. “I will spend some time virtually every weekend walking the dog through the woods.”

His typical diet includes a slice of peanut butter toast and juice in the morning; a salmon sandwich and baked chips for lunch; and chicken, green beans or spinach salad and rice, pasta or potatoes for dinner.

He does his level best not to take breaks from his regimen, unless they are forced due to travel or other work conflicts. And one thing he never cheats on is his time with the elliptical.

“No one is watching me, but obviously, I know if I have gone the whole 42 minutes and have given it my all,” he says. “The magic of 42 minutes is that there are 14 segments to my workout program. At three minutes a piece, I know when each component of agony will abate.”

He says many things inspired him to change his lifestyle. Mainly, “it was taking a hard look at myself in the mirror and saying, ‘You can do better than that.’”

Guilty pleasure: “I love candy. No exercise means no candy.”

His advice: Be determined! Do not let little setbacks get you down. Realize you control what goes in your mouth. It is OK to eat whatever you wish to eat. Just force yourself to stop earlier than you’d like. You are the only person who can change you. Once you realize that simple, little fact, you can be your own best fan or your biggest critic.

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