Just today, I had two conversations with people who put their back pain down to age. One was in the mid-60s, and the other in the early 40s.

It’s easy to think of our bodies as machines that wear down over time. And if there’s one thing we humans love doing, it’s to latch on to simple explanations to bring us a sense of stability and comfort in an unpredictable world.

But the human body is an annoyingly complicated living thing. Unlike a rusting, offensively orange Citroën CX, our cells continuously renew, and the body has an incredible ability to adapt and regenerate.

Yes, age can play a part in back pain. But for every MRI finding of “wear and tear” as a cause for pain, there are just as many, if not more, people who are entirely pain-free despite identical findings.

Besides, as we journey through the dumpster fire of life, we build resilience—emotionally and physically. And the pain threshold actually tends to increase with age. I know, right?

As I’ve written before, pain is a complex puzzle. And our beliefs about our body’s resiliency are critical to that pain puzzle.

Let’s crush the easy narrative that back pain is an unavoidable part of aging. And instead, put more effort into understanding our pain.