Nothing will make me straighten up faster than seeing some old codger bent over like a question mark. My posture rapidly improves for several hours after seeing a tottering old hunchback descending into decrepitude. I'm not ashamed to admit this behavior is in the finest traditions of narcissism - something my Boomer generation truly excels at.
But this behavioral correction in the form of maintaining good posture, or physical training, is not denial. If anything, it's the ready admission that we are all of us slouching towards old age and death. In a strange way, this narcissism is a form of empathy, in the form of perhaps a misery-loves-company empathy.
Speaking of empathy, I got a chance to wear a version of the AGNES suit here at an on-campus health seminar. It was not the actual AGNES (Age Gain Now Empathy System) developed at MIT's AgeLab, but close enough. The nursing students hobbled me up with a bunch of bungee cords so that I could not stand up straight, or bend over, or walk well.
After a half-hour, I was fucking exhausted! Bottom line? Getting old sucks!
I still remember what my Grandma used to say "Don't get old".
My reply today is still the same as then "Maybe so, but I'll take getting old over the alternative".