Archive for the ‘fitness’ category

Seniors: Look and Feel Great at Any Age

January 17th, 2020

While change is good, aging is a change that causes the body to crave more attention than it ever did before. What men and women could ignore at 30, 40 or even 50 has a way of demanding extra attention in later years.

To stay looking and feeling great, tweak your daily grooming habits and discover new products that align with the changing needs of your body. By doing so, you’ll preserve the healthy and energetic you for years to come.

Adopt a meticulous skin care regimen for your face and body. To keep skin looking its best, exfoliate once a week. Exfoliation removes dead skin cells that have a tendency to build up on aging skin. Removing old cells helps your skin absorb moisturizers and uncovers your natural, healthy glow.

Fend off itchy, dry skin by hydrating your body with moisturizers in the morning and at night and set up an in-home humidifier to add moisture back into the air, especially during the winter months. If your range of motion has diminished with age, try a roll-on lotion applicator with an extended handle to moisturize hard-to-reach areas.

Drink adequate amounts of water and eat healthy foods in smaller portions. Nutrient rich foods help ward off common health problems and increase your energy level while water keeps you hydrated and wards off daytime fatigue. Eating smaller, more frequent meals is reported to stabilize glucose and insulin levels, improve digestion and reduce heartburn.

Treat yourself to a pedicure on a routine basis and buy proper fitting shoes, boots and sandals. The right footwear offers a solid foundation and helps prevent falls. If you suffer from foot pain, heal pain, toe nail pain or any other foot condition that can’t be properly diagnosed and treated at home, visit your podiatrist. Using arch supports can provide relief for simple issues. They can be easily bought on Amazon, just like these orthotics.

Be a stickler when it comes to oral hygiene. Oral health is crucial in warding off gum disease which can impact insulin levels and contribute to heart disease and pneumonia. If arthritis or hand tremors inhibit brushing, try an electric toothbrush or an adaptive aid with a thicker grip and/or weighted base to enable you to perform daily grooming tasks independently.

Take care of your hair with regular haircuts and conditioners to keep it strong and healthy. If you notice your hair discoloring, ask your stylist to recommend hair care products that restore the silver, gray or white tone to your hair. Pollutants from the shower, swimming pool and even the air are known to cause hair discoloration.

Find more reasons to socialize and laugh. Studies prove that laughing enhances immune systems, lowers blood pressure and reduces tension among other things. Socializing brings you out of isolation which can cause depression and offers new opportunities for you to learn and experience new things at any age.

Start your new self-care regimen today. If you’ve been neglecting yourself and your body’s cravings, enhance your confidence by giving your body the attention it deserves as you continue to look and feel great at any age!

Fitness After 40

October 7th, 2015

 

flat footed cyclist

The quest for physical fitness does not end with the onset of middle-age. Your 40th birthday is not a harbinger of declining strength and fitness. The truth is, exercise is more important after age 40 than ever before.

But your body changes as you age and your fitness training must change with it. Adapting your middle-age fitness training program to your body’s changing needs enables you to maintain or improve your fitness as you navigate through your 40s, 50s, and beyond.

Here are some ideas for training effectively in your 40s:

Take More Time to Warm Up: Aging makes you more susceptible to injury. It also increases injury recovery time. The last thing you need is a pulled hamstring, a torn pectoral, or a strained foot. Have you ever searched for the term “pain in heel“? Articles like this are plentiful for a reason! Flat feet can predispose you to injury as well.  Orthotics for flat feet, just like these, can be helpful.

Injury is most likely to occur during the first few minutes or reps of your workout. In middle-age, warming up properly is a critical part of your fitness program.

Warm up for a minimum of fifteen minutes before strenuous exercise, especially weight training. Start off with five minutes of gentle leg stretches, and follow that with five to ten minutes on the stationary bike, treadmill, or elliptical. Finish with some light range-of-motion movements. You can check out YouTube for some helpful videos and tips, just be sure to check with your doctor first.

Reduce the Weight and Increase Repetitions: Maintaining muscle mass in middle-age is not difficult, provided you train smart. That is the good news.

Here is the bad news: Training with heavy weights, as if you are a body-builder in his prime, is courting trouble. Though heavy iron may have built your body in your youth, it is likely to tear it down in middle-age. Training with less weight and higher repetitions allows you to maintain muscle mass while reducing injury risk. For additional muscle stimulation with little added risk, sustain the contraction at the peak of each repetition.

How much do you really care about your one- rep max deadlift, squat, or bench press? The smart answer is “Not at all.” Take some weight of the bar and avoid injuries.

Listen to Your Body: Take a day or two off when you are feeling achy, lethargic, or over-trained from previous workouts. You might have tried to push through the tiredness in the past, but after age 40 the smart move is to wait for a better day. Apply this rule to individual exercises as well. Use caution with your first few repetitions of each exercise. Do not continue the movement if something feels “off” that day.

Include Cross-Training in Your Workout Program: Weight-training alone is not enough to maintain optimal fitness. Alternate your workouts between weight training, flexibility, cardio, balance, and other forms of exercise. Try to reduce weight training to three days per week. You can still exercise on the other days, just vary your activity.

Mix it up when you are not weight training. Take a day to run hills or stairs. The next day use an Arc Trainer at varying inclines and resistance levels. Ice-skate or cross-country ski during winter months. Join a weekly basketball game. Visit a local facility that has a simulated rock-climbing wall. Take a yoga class. The possibilities are endless.

Vary Intensity of Cardio Programs: Use different types of equipment and vary levels of intensity of your cardio programs for varying lengths of time. One day do high intensity interval training (HIIT) on the treadmill for 30 minutes. The next day use a stationary bike for an hour of steady-state cardio. Mixing it up keeps your body guessing and avoids the pitfall of overburdening some muscles at the expense of others.

Additional factors beyond exercise play an important role in staying fit after 40. Proper nutrition and use of appropriate dietary supplements are vital to your continued fitness. Always consult a physician or nutritionist for advice on these matters.