Buckets of Longevity: from Dr. Brian - Pinnacle Physical Therapy

Buckets of Longevity: from Dr. Brian

Buckets of Longevity: from Dr. Brian

As a physical therapist, most people come to see me when they are in pain. Patients often turn to physical therapy as a last resort to address a chronic issue or after some terrible injury has upended their lives. In the vast majority of cases, I’m able to help them get better. That’s what I do, and I’m glad to do it. 

However, my real passion is helping people reach their peak physical potential at whatever age they are so that they can live long and healthy lives. When I have the privilege of working with a patient who not only wants to get out of pain but also wants to improve their baseline health, we can make amazing progress!

To live a long and healthy life, I talk to my patients about what I call the Buckets of Longevity. Everyone has these buckets, but they may be full or empty depending on physical condition, lifestyle, and habits.

So what are these longevity buckets you need to pay attention to?


Sleep is foundational to health. Your body repairs and regenerates during sleep. Adults generally need between 7 – 9 hours of sleep per night. 

Nutrition and Hydration

I’m sure you know the importance of healthy food in healthy amounts to keep your body functioning optimally. A high-quality, balanced diet can support health and fend off some of the major diseases that cut lives short, including heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. Shoot for drinking half your body weight in ounces of water a day! Work up slowly if you are far from that goal. 

Cardiovascular Health

Regular aerobic exercise is great for improving cardiovascular health, but other lifestyle factors are important too, such as proper nutrition, limiting alcohol, and avoiding tobacco products. Ideally, you should get at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise per day, at least five days a week, for 150 minutes per week.


Strength training is important to preserve muscle mass and keep bones healthy as we age. Strength is also a major factor in avoiding injury. 

Balance and Flexibility

Along with strength which I mentioned above, balance and flexibility are also super important for injury prevention. When your body is strong and flexible, and you have good balance, you are less likely to fall or suffer muscle and ligament tears that can seriously affect your quality of life. Even in the case of an unfortunate accident, if you have good balance, flexibility, and strength, your injuries will be less severe, and your prognosis for recovery is much better than they otherwise would be.

Mental Health / Stress Management

Your mental health and stress levels can both influence your health directly and be influenced by your overall health and lifestyle factors. Filling up the other longevity buckets will improve mental health and lower stress. On the other hand, external stressors such as work or interpersonal relationships can take a real toll over time and need to be taken seriously when it comes to your health.

Every patient I see can fill all of these buckets. I enjoy helping my patients understand and implement a plan to fill or at least have some water in all of these buckets. I gain so much joy when I see a patient of mine start filling the buckets I mentioned above. 

I often see and hear that they have never felt so good. They enjoy life more because they are playing better tennis, have more energy to play with their grandkids, or maybe they are now outdriving their playing partners in golf. To know that I have given them the tools to address these areas of their longevity is also very fulfilling. I run into past patients all the time who tell me they are still keeping up with what I taught them because they see, and are living, the value it brings. Continuing this series, I will break down each bucket to give you the latest research on why and how we can ensure each bucket is full!

If you are interested in talking to me about your buckets, please feel free to contact me. I can be reached at 501-529-2010.

Thanks, and here’s to helping you reach your PINNACLE!

Dr. Brian

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