Pax Beale, The 75 Year-Old Bodybuilder
By Mimi Rohr/ Gamma
San Francisco, CA, USA
“I’m seventy-five years old and going strong “says Paxton (Pax) Beale. At his age, the still pumping iron some two hours a day.

“Total Commitment” is Beale’s personal philosophy and as well as approach to very aspect of his life. An entrepreneur, millionaire and life –time sports enthusiast, Beale – often referred to him-self as the “come-back kid” rehabilitated himself after a quintuple by-pass heart surgery that resulted in complications in 1991.

After a life-time of flirting with various sports – in the amateur and professional arena - Beale stumbled onto weight lifting in his 50’s, in search for the perfect exercise for his ailing back. At the age of 53 Beale became a body builder, entering numerous competitions stealing titles from competitor’s decades younger, including Mr. USA in 1990 at the age of 60 and Mr. Universe in 1995 at the age of 65.

But success carried a price for Beale. Chest pains plagued him by 1991 – at the age of 61, ending in heart surgery. His odds of survival were 50%-50%. Although Beale survived the initial surgery and a subsequent surgery two weeks later, the end result was that his heart was working at 25% capacity. Furthermore, if the tissue was not revitalized within 90 days, the damage would be irreversible, according to the medical community. His doctors prescribed a life very different from the one Beale had been living.

But Beale would not give up that easy. Once given the green light to exercise, Beale returned to the gym. His doctor came to visit him in the gym, remembers Beale, and told the director of the gym that “he better get a body bag, because Beale was going to kill himself.” According to Beale, the doctor was unaware of Beale’s definition of exercise.

Beale did not stop there. His career had taken him through the medical profession. He had conducted research in the field from his early days at the Dow Chemical Company – his first job after graduating from University of California, Berkeley (Cal) with a degree in Business Administration. Looking for the missing ingredient to his recovery, Beale stumbled across a protein, Pyruvate. The effects of pyruvate had been studied “extensively on animals, but to my knowledge had never been used on humans,” said Beale. “I decided to make myself a human guinea pig.”

Soon Beale was no longer out of breath during his workouts. Within the year, his cardiologist could find no evidence of dead heart tissue. Beale had rejuvenated his heart. “It (the pyruvate) was the cherry on the Sunday,” said Beale who attributes its success to a “synergistic effect.” He developed the compound into a nutritional supplement and marketed it to the public.

Beale called the system “Body for The Ages,” which has become his passion and new life’s work. The regime included diet, weight resistance training, food supplements and Beale’s philosophy of “total commitment”.

Promoting the Body for the Ages, which opened in 2004, the program has literally given Beale a new lease on life. Beale runs the center with “the love of his life”, wife Sophie Taggert. Beale married Taggert, in the hospital, literally on the way to the operating theatre for his heart surgery. Taggert, also a body builder holds the title of Ms. America (1990), Ms. World (1995), and Ms. Universe (1998). “She’s my tower of power,” said Beale.

When asked if he ever took steroids to achieve his muscle mass, Beale chuckled, “no, but thanks for asking. If I look like it, it makes me feel good.”

Mimi Rohr © 2005
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