Do you ever see videos online of people their 70s and beyond shooting hoops, bicycling, or busting a move on the dance floor and think, “I want to be that person when I grow up”?
I know I do! One of my dreams is to still be able to hike long distances through the mountains at the age of 75.
One of the best things you can do to help make your golden goals happen is to:
- Start doing those things NOW (if you aren’t already) and
- Take care of your muscles by keeping them strong and flexible.
Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s easier to clean a clean house?”
It seems like a no-brainer, but the same philosophy works with your fitness and health.
It’s so much easier to KEEP your fitness level (and your muscle) than it is to rebuild it.
IMPORTANT NOTE: It’s never too late to get into shape and gain muscle … you can absolutely do it. It doesn’t matter what your age is. It just takes time, consistency and a little patience. Most of our clients are over 40, and we’ve helped them build muscle and get stronger and fitter regardless of their backgrounds.
Anyway … here’s why it’s so important!
When you hit the age of 30, you start losing 1% to 2% of your muscle mass each year.
Less muscle = less strength = less balance = more risk of falls and fracture. Not good!
Plus, not only does keeping your muscles healthy improve your strength and quality of life, but it also is an important part of keeping your metabolism revved (i.e., burning fat) as you age.
This is why strength training is so important as you get older! It can help your body retain your muscle, and maybe even reverse the trend.
Here are two to-dos to put on your weekly self-care list to get a jump start on keeping that precious muscle … and helping it stay strong and flexible.
1. Lift weights at least 2-3x a week.
2. Move every day – stretch, walk, run, ski, hike, dance, garden, etc.
These things will pay off not only now, but decades into the future.
→ Get at least TWO total body strength-training workouts in each week.
These workouts should include all your major muscle groups, including your “big” muscles – legs, back, and chest. In fact, our NEW You program starts new lifters out with only 2-3 workouts a week and people get stronger.
BONUS: Resistance training also helps keep your bones strong.
→ Make time to stretch. This gets even more important as you get older. Not only does it help cut back on aches and pains, but it helps your muscles move through a wide range of motion.
Maintaining flexibility is a surprising factor when it comes to balance. When your range of motion becomes limited, it can affect your walking gait as well as your posture. Both of those have a big effect on your balance!
Try to set aside 5-10 minutes several days a week to work on your flexibility.
BONUS: Resistance training also helps promote flexibility.
Lifting weights through a full range of motion can also increase your flexibility and incorporating unilateral exercises (e.g. lunges) can improve your balance.
Your future-you will be super grateful to your present-you, I promise! 🙂
Another great way to show yourself some love: by taking excellent care of your fitness/wellness! Consider working with your own private coach in our NEW You Program. If you would like to learn more about it, you can join me for a free program discussion on Zoom. Sign up for the call here – https://www.thenewyouprogram.com/webinar
If you want to chat about your goals, let me know in the comments below!