She was probably a little more than 5-feet-tall... and close to 160 pounds of pure muscle. On a day unlike any other, I crossed the path of this 60-year-old woman (though she doesn't look a day over 40) who is an avid bodybuilder, at the gym I often work out in.
We were both headed to a piece of equipment to do pull-ups - I was by myself, she was with a cadre of women that she was training. As I was about to get on the machine she cut me off rather quickly and hopped on it before I got the chance.
"Hey," I told her. "I was just going to get on that."
She gave a quick glance back toward me and rolled her eyes. She then proceeded to do about 50 pulls ups before stepping away from the machine.
No doubt physical fitness is a main priority for her as it is for a great deal of enthusiasts at the gym, but are they focused on their mental fitness or their brain health? Shortly after I had my encounter with her, I had the chance to talk to a company called SharpBrains, a firm that serves as an advocate for brain health.
It was amazing to me that in my discussion with SharpBrains CEO Alvaro Fernandez, that there is a cultural shift regarding neurological diseases and that many companies are developing programs and techniques to prevent these diseases from setting in.
The market for this concept is rapidly growing – expected to jump from the current level of $1 billion to about $6 billion in 2020 – according to the SharpBrains newly released study, the Digital Brain Health Market 2012-2020.
The 211-page market report tracks developments at more than fifty public and private companies offering fully automated applications designed to assess, monitor and/or enhance cognition and brain functioning, and provides industry data, insights and analysis to help executives, entrepreneurs, technology/health innovators and policy makers navigate the opportunities and risks of the rapidly growing Digital Brain Health field.
In summary, he said that patients are going to be doing more and more to preserve their brain health alongside their physical health. So the next time I see my 60-year-old workout nemesis, it might be worth a mention to her to look into what the company is doing - that is if I can muster up the courage to look her in the eye after our last encounter.