There is so much to love about getting older, but there are also so many dire realities to face. Our muscle mass – essentially the muscle mass in our bodies – peaks at the age of 30 and our metabolism begins to stutter after 40. “By the age of 80, many of us lost up to 30 percent [of our muscle mass]”Says Melina Jampolis, MD, in her book Spice Up, Live Long. “In women, our muscle breakdown really begins to accelerate from the age of 50, which is partly caused by the hormonal changes of menopause, but also by inactivity. “
In addition, your muscles and tendons lose elasticity and your joints inevitably suffer as a result. All of this is why if you want to achieve a lean physique after 50 – which, let’s be clear, is still possible – you need to take a close look at both your diet and exercise regimen, as neither may stay the same as in your 20s and 30s. You can find information about your diet here.
But when it comes to your training, we at ETNT Mind + Body spoke to numerous experts who shared the best training tricks and fitness principles that you need to do and apply to your life to get the lean body you’ve always wanted . Curious to know what they are? Read on because we included them below. And for more workout tips as you age, make sure you know about the most underrated exercises that everyone over 40 should be doing, says Top Trainer.
Virtually every single trainer and doctor we’ve contacted for this article told us the same thing: After 50, whether male or female, the most important thing you can do about exercise is lifting more weights -period. And one thing that you should seriously consider is high-intensity interval training (HIIT). (You can find more information on HIIT here.)
“Women in their 50s start going through menopause,” says Traci D. Mitchell, PT, health trainer and author of The Belly Burn Plan. “Although women can stay in fabulous shape after 50, they need to listen to their hormones. At this age, estrogen begins to decline sharply. Fat, in turn, migrates north through the abdominal area and insulin resistance becomes a real threat.” . When insulin levels go up, cortisol almost always goes up. Stress increases stress! When stress is high, the last thing a woman should do is do something like HIIT. “
Along with other experts, she says strength training is the way to go. “It can be of great benefit to both men and women,” she says. “Strength training not only increases muscle mass, which increases metabolism, but it also stimulates the body’s natural collagen production. It is important that we have optimal levels of collagen to maintain joint health. It is produced at high levels by the age of 18 Swan dives after 40. “
According to Pam Sherman, a 54-year-old trainer and health coach, you should do weight training at least three to four days a week. “You should avoid long endurance cardio or long steady state cardio,” she says. “Long cardio exercise makes you hungry. If you’re trying to get and stay lean, lifting weights is your best bet!”
To learn more about why you should be lifting more weights, consider Elizabeth Ward, MS, RDN’s personal journey. “In my 20s and 30s, running dominated my exercise program, and weight training was an afterthought,” she tells us. “To be honest, I really wanted to control my weight and thought aerobics was the way to go. That all changed in my 40s when I began to see the many benefits of lifting weights and other resistance exercises. I am now Over 50, and I still run and take kickboxing classes, but strength training is an equal part of my workout routine and isn’t just a side issue. ” And more great training tips can be found here: Would you like to get slim after 40? Do these exercises, experts say.
“Free weights and cable exercises are best because they attract more muscle than machines holding you in a plane of motion, and free weights usually involve some balance training that is important as you age,” says Tina Marinaccio, MS, RD, CPT .
But experts agree that you don’t have to raise what your Schwarzenegger name is. “Avoid heavy lifting,” says Amber O’Brien, RD, of the Mango Clinic in Miami. “It’s not recommended for people over 50 because it increases the risk of muscle and joint injuries. Your muscles and joints aren’t as good for heavy lifting as you get older.”
Experts say that in addition to strength training, you should also focus on your flexibility. “After the age of 50, your body loses flexibility, which makes you more prone to muscle injuries,” said Allen Conrad, BS, DC, CSCS of the Montgomery County Chiropractic Center in Pennyslvania. “Muscles and tendons lose elasticity and intervertebral discs degenerate with age. Therefore, it is important to include alternative health care services, such as chiropractic, stretching, and massage therapy, into your daily routine when you live to be over 50. This will help reduce injury.” avoid. and improve recovery time if you injure yourself. “
If you’re not exercising your muscles or walking daily (more on that later), he advises you to consider Pilates and yoga to keep your joints strong and your body flexible. Again, according to experts, you should avoid HIIT. “These advanced exercises can put extra strain on your joints, and people over 50 are at higher risk of stress fractures than younger athletes,” says Conrad.
He also notes that jumping in the pool is a surefire way to get strong. “Aqua aerobics is an effective way to get a great workout,” he says. “The water reduces the wear and tear on your body, but it also provides extra resistance so your muscles can work efficiently.” For more reasons to get limber, check out The One Incredible Side Effect of Doing Yoga, New Study says.
“You have to stay active during the day,” says Sherman. “Make sure you get up and walk every 90 minutes or so. Add a morning walk most days of the week. Our bodies are designed to walk, not sit all day. Everything you read before is true: Park further away in the parking lot, take the stairs. More daily exercise is always best for our bodies. ”To learn more about the clever ways you can move more each day, miss not those secret little tricks to get a lean body fast, experts say.
You need to reduce your stress levels, and not just to keep your cortisol down. “Stress can affect your gut health as stress weakens the gut barrier and allows gut bacteria to invade your body,” says Anthony S. Padula, MD. “While your body’s immune system is fighting it, it can cause chronic mild symptoms if it occurs all the time. Make time for activities or hobbies that you enjoy doing, such as reading, yoga or massages to reduce stress. “
According to Ellen Albertson, PhD, RDN, NBC-HWC, your goals should also include: “Get enough sleep, manage stress (cortisol increases fat deposition and appetite), deal with hedonic and emotional eating, be patient (losing weight takes longer than ) We age), focus on lifestyle changes, make weight loss a result rather than a goal, and recognize the importance of support. ” And for more ways to live smarter, healthier lives at any age, don’t miss out on the things you should never do before breakfast, experts say.