Yes, You Can Get Fitter as You Get Older


Deb Lowther

Step One? Start now!

Whether you are 31, 46 or 52, the point is to get started. Now. It doesn’t matter when you start. It only matters that you start. Why? Because good health is a daily endeavour, a moving target. It’s a lifestyle, not an end goal. You have to shift your thinking and decide that, with each passing day, you’ll move a little more and eat a little better.

Let’s not kid ourselves: you’re never going to be twenty something again. No amount of exercise is going to turn back the clock a time when your level of energy was more or less boundless. That said, as you head into your forties or fifties, you can still move forward with good health, building on the muscles that you already have, using your body’s own natural resilience to become stronger through an increase in activity. Even if you’re already in your fifties, you can start now and get healthier as you age, not just older.

Losing Muscle As You Age

What you do need to be aware of is that you lose muscle mass as you age. It’s called sarcopenia and we all have to endure it, beginning in our forties. You can stop it age related muscle loss in its tracks however by staying active, eating right, including protein and essential amino acids that are the building blocks of muscle and strength, flexibility and balance.

In fact, as we age, you need even more essential amino acids to build new muscle, stop age related muscle loss and repair muscle damage after exercise. It’s not always possible to get enough complete proteins through standard dietary changes, so a supplement like REJUVENATE, that contains all the essential amino acids, will work to help you re-build muscle, no matter how much you exercise.

Step Two: Stay Active

Did your mother ever say to you: “Move it or lose it”? She was trying to tell you that if you don’t stay active, your body will let you down. What everyone needs, at a minimum, is 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise, 5 days a week. How? Easy! Add a walk to your daily routine: walk the dog, get some groceries, use the stairs instead of the elevator… find a destination or a purpose for your walk and you’ll never have an excuse not to take one.

Walking at a good pace is an effective way to reduce the risk of heart disease, reduce stress and anxiety, tone your muscles, and increase your energy levels. All good, right?

As time goes by and your fitness level increases, you need to up the intensity of your pace for even more benefit. A great way to motivate yourself is to use a fitness tracker. With it,  you can set a pace, increase your distance and turn your daily walk into a workout that will have you fit at 50 and beyond.

Step Three: Build Strength

In addition to cardiovascular exercise, it’s a good idea to include some strength training into your routine. Not only will it go a long way to slowing the aging process, including age-related muscle loss, but strength training will also help you to improve your fitness level. Strength training doesn’t mean you have to lift huge weights but you do have to challenge your muscles beyond the basics.

You can do strength exercises using your own body weight as resistance, or add in some resistance bands for an extra workout. Some small free weights are an easy addition to your workout too. If you enjoy getting out of the house for a workout, consider a yoga class where poses are geared to challenge you muscles. Another option? Water aerobics class. Not only will you get the cardio workout but the water is a perfect resistance for your muscles. Feel like getting your groove on? A Zumba class that uses dance to increase your cardio and muscle tone is not only good for you, it’s good fun! Basically, any activity that will exert strength and help you build muscle as you age is guaranteed to keep you fit at 50.

Step Four: Eat Protein

You’re working out and building / re-building muscle, so you need to make sure that you’re taking in enough protein to compensate and help your muscles. One great way to add protein without inhaling a steak is to get into the protein smoothie habit. Whether in the mornings for breakfast, or after a workout to feed your body and muscles, a smoothie with protein powder and REJUVENATE added in will give you all the building blocks to keep your muscles healthy and slow the aging process. 

Beyond that, make sure every meal, including snacks, have high quality protein ingredients. By making protein your focus you will help your muscles reverse the effects of aging.

Check Before You Begin

If you haven’t been regularly active before, it’s probably best to check with your doctor before upping the ante on your workout routine. Certain medications or conditions can affect your overall aerobic tolerance and stamina.

And if it has been awhile since you hit the gym, get a consult with a trained professional on the best strength training and weights exercises for you. A fitness trainer can help you avoid injury by ensuring that you are doing the exercises correctly, and give you a routine that are easier on weaker areas, such as your back and knees.  

So there’s no time like the present to get moving and eat better. Combine those two lifestyle changes for a stronger, better and longer life. It’s definitely possible to get healthier as you age: all you have to do is try.