August 9, 2023
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Tips to Stay in Shape as You Age
Many women struggle with keeping up with their workout goals as they age. However, entering middle age does not mean that you need to abandon your health and fitness priorities. You can look and feel great at any age if you take the time to make fitness a priority. Here are a few proven workout tips for women over the age of 40.
Do not make the mistake of only focusing on cardiovascular activity when designing your workout plan. Strength training becomes even more important as you age, particularly for females. Women are far more likely to have osteoporosis when compared to men. In fact, one in three women over the age of 50 will experience bone fractures as a result of osteoporosis at some point in their life.
Strength training will help to make bones stronger, mitigating this risk significantly. It is especially important to focus on the hips and back when strength training as these body parts are most likely to break in a fall.
Strength training may also lower the risk of cancer and cardiac disease in older women. Some research has also demonstrated that a regular strength training routine can boost brain function in adults over the age of 55. This is good news for those who are at risk of cognitive impairment.
Do not feel intimidated by the concept of strength training. You will see the best results if you consult with a trainer before picking up those weights. The help of a professional will ensure that you are using the correct form. This will help to maximize results and reduce the risk of injury.
In addition to strength training, older women also need to be particularly diligent about focusing on flexibility. The muscles and tendons in the body tend to get stiffer as you get older. This makes it necessary to incorporate stretching and flexibility exercises into your fitness routine. Good choices include yoga and pilates. Not only will these types of exercises reduce stiffness but they also make you less prone to injuries because you will enjoy a greater range of motion.
The key to sticking with a fitness program is to choose activities that you enjoy. You will be less likely to fall off the wagon if you choose exercise routines that you look forward to doing. It may take some experimentation to find the mix of workouts that motivate you to keep going.
Some women also find success with choosing activities with a social component. For instance, maybe you want to sign up for a group dance class that feels more like a fun night out with friends rather than time at the gym? Other women appreciate the solitude that comes with a long run alone. Only you can decide what activities will encourage you to stick with your plan.
You will also boost your odds of sticking with your exercise plan if you mix up your activities. It does not take long for a workout to feel stale and mundane if it is the only thing that you do. You are also more likely to plateau in your health and fitness goals if you do the same workout over and over.
If you are attached to a particular form of exercise, you can vary it by adding more intensity. For instance, try working in some speed work into your normal morning jog around the neighborhood. However, it is important to be careful when increasing intensity at this age. Be sure to take it slow so that you do not inadvertently injure yourself.
There is no doubt that it can be challenging to fit in your workouts when you are dealing with the demands of raising a family. Finding a workout buddy will help you to stay accountable to your fitness priorities. It will be a lot harder to ditch that morning walk if you know that your neighbor is waiting for you. Research has shown that people are more consistent with their exercise initiatives when they are being held accountable.
Do not hesitate to set up a reward system for yourself as a source of motivation. For instance, maybe you want to reward yourself with that new pair of jeans if you reach your fitness goals for the month? You can also consider working the incentive into the actual workout. Ask a friend to head out for a long hike with you with the promise of lunch afterward. Rewarding yourself for your hard work will serve as a source of motivation.
It is no secret that your metabolism begins to slow as you get older. This makes it important to understand that what you eat matters if you are looking to lose or maintain weight. Any extra calories that your body does not need will inevitably be converted to fat. There are numerous online calculators that can help you to determine how many calories you need to eat in order to maintain or lose weight.
Make your calories count by focusing on eating plenty of protein and fresh produce. Low-fat dairy products are also especially vital for women of this age. The calcium found in these products will help to prevent excessive bone loss.
The most important thing to remember as you push onward with your fitness routine is to give yourself grace. Do not be discouraged if you only have 20 minutes a day to exercise. Every little bit helps and is better than doing nothing at all.
Listen to your body. It will tell you when you need to step back and take a break. You do not need to be a hero and push through the pain. Along that same vein, do not let one bad day or week get you off track from achieving all of your health goals. Simply get up the next day and start anew.
Age should not be a barrier to achieving all of your fitness objectives. Do not let the number of candles on your birthday cake define your physical activity level.
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