Oh my, it’s a scary old world out there, be afraid, be very afraid…
Science has proven that from the age of 25 people can lose up to 1% of their lean muscle mass per year, and that as they pass 35 the body slows down production of hormones beneficial to working out.
We are constantly told that exercise is harder as we age, that middle age spread is a right of passage. In a nutshell, we are programmed to believe that working out becomes more difficult as we get older.
But it’s not only the bodily changes that affect our physical abilities as we age!
People settle down, have relationship commitments, children, increased job responsibility & the associated stresses and other things that come from being an adult.
Even if they do try to do something about it and ask for help from the mighty Google for the “best workout over 40” there are over 44 million results.
It’s a minefield of data, where do you start??? How do you sift through all the crap and find a reliable way to get in shape?
It’s obviously just not possible.
Well, sorry to disappoint all the sceptics out there but Steve & Linda, aka TheLifeKey, politely disagree !!
We all make choices as to the type of life we want to lead…
weigh up the pros & cons…
And if the decision is that we want to live a healthy, fit life and to be the best we can be!
Then we make the necessary commitment to change and adopt a suitable training schedule.
Obviously, it’s important not to try and train like a twenty-year-old, an aging body simply can’t train hard every session, it might not even be possible to train hard for an entire session.
But training appropriately, will allow us to play around outside like a youngster, for longer. (If we try the other way around and train all-out like a twenty-year old, we’ll spend the time away from training recovering on the sofa… ask Steve about that when you see him.)
A forty-something, complete beginner to exercise, needs to start at the very beginning, to gain mobility, stability and flexibility.
The reality is that, to get the body moving well at a later age, you need to think back to the last time your body worked efficiently.
There’s a fair chance that for some of you that was when you were about six years old and used movement to discover the environment, and played to gain all the muscle and flexibility needed.
However, over the years, you have programmed your bodies to sit at a desk, in school and at the office, sit in a car day after day and have ended up sitting still and moving less and less.
Our bodies naturally adapt to become good at the things we do regularly, so is it any wonder that after decades of sitting still you have difficulty moving?
Movement & stability are the things that allowed us a good start in life and will allow us to regain as much as possible later in life.
There’s good evidence to suggest that even fast walking has a great correlation to living a longer, healthier life and that just being able to get up from the floor without needing to use your hands is a good sign of possible longevity.
Once you’re moving, it’s then time to think about strength and conditioning and this is where it’s worth investing in a trained fitness coach to help you with the most effective and efficient regime.
Listen to your coach, but ideally split the training week into days with different themes, one day strength, one day power, one day cardio, one day mobility and so on. This has the added benefit of not stressing the joints too much and keeping boredom at bay.
And it’s important to remember that If you want to get the best return from your time spent training, nutrition is a major factor.
Every meal that isn’t in line with the goals of living a healthy, energetic life will make you feel out of sorts, possibly for days. Remember the old adage “you are what you eat” well it must have been for those of us over forty.
Food is the pillar for how much energy we have, nourishing from the inside out, it must be a priority.
So to summarise, every day:
Eat a healthy balance of carbohydrates, protein, vegetables & fruit.
Move as much as you can, go the extra mile…
Mobilise and work on flexibility.
Add strength and conditioning sessions in to training schedules
Oh and drink plenty of water (we won’t tell if occasionally you replace it with wine or a G&T, you are a grown-up after all!), staying hydrated is another key point 🙂
If you are stuck, here at TheLifeKey, we do the work for you and offer reliable, properly researched information on training & nutrition, which can keep you performing as well as possible for as long as possible.