If you’re over the age of 50 or your 50th birthday is fast approaching, you have probably noticed things have slowed down a little. Sadly, a natural consequence of aging is the body being slower to respond to exercise, plus an increase in fatigue and muscle joint aches.
When you are over 50, certain exercises you have done all your life can become more dangerous — crunches, deadlifts, HIT workouts and long distance runs, for example. There is no doubt that the body changes after 50, but this workout plan will help you achieve lifelong fitness.
- Focus on your strength
Strength training will keep your muscles, memory, and your heart strong
Examples of muscle-strengthening activities include:
- Lifting weights. (1-3kgs)
- Working with resistance bands.
- Heavy gardening, such as digging and shoveling.
- Climbing stairs.
- Push-ups, sit-ups and squats.
- Walk regularly… and go the distance.
It sounds simple, and it is — but it is also important. Walking has consistently been shown to improve cardiovascular fitness, improve the mood, and keep weight under control. The risk of injury is extremely low, and anyone can do it. When it comes to walking, frequency and distance do matter. We’re designed to be active, and if you can walk every day (or close to it), you will be doing yourself a big favor. You won’t always hit 10,000 steps a day, but that’s what you should aim for.
- Don’t forget your core
Toning your core goes way beyond doing standard sit-ups. For best results, do crunches and other ab movement on a stability ball, which will force you to use more of your muscles as you balance. Front and side planks are also excellent. Most people focus on toning their abs in hopes of getting a flatter belly, but your core actually wraps all the way around your torso. Therefore, you should focus on toning many muscles at once. One exercise is called a canoe, which mimics the upper body motion of paddling a canoe.
- Yoga has lasting health benefits
Whether you have been practicing for decades or you have never been on a mat in your life, developing a regular yoga practice can have lasting healthy benefits, especially for the over 50 crowd. You will improve your balance, protect your joints, and you may even help your memory and control your chronic pain.
- Plank Properly
Executing a proper plank is simple but form matters. Assume a modified push-up position with your elbows bent 90 degrees and both forearms resting on the floor. Position your elbows (or hands) directly underneath your shoulders and look straight toward the floor. Your body should form a perfectly straight line from the crown of your head to your heels. Hold the position as long as you can, or try for 30 second intervals.
While it’s never too late to get back into shape (or start working out), the fact is, you cannot exercise the same way at 50 as you did at 25. Take things a little more slowly than you used to, especially if it has been awhile since you worked out regularly. Sprinting is a no-go — you will reap more benefits from a slow, steady run that covers more distance.
Enjoy A Healthy Life After 50.