A lot of things happen to the body as a person approaches middle age. Muscle mass will decrease while fat levels increase. Many people also find it difficult to lose weight compared to their younger years. When this happens, it’s time to introduce a change to the normal exercise routine. Here are four fitness tips to consider for people 40 and above.
Easy Fitness Tips for the Over 40
To put it simply, muscle burns fat, so fitness in the middle-aged years should emphasize building muscle mass. Strength training, such as weight lifting, is the most effective way to achieve this goal. Not only does it build muscle, it also stimulates the metabolism and maintains bone health.
Keep a food journal
It’s very difficult to lose weight without counting calories. Exercise is also more effective for weight loss when it’s paired with a reduced caloric intake. People in their 40s may not be used to having to watch what they eat with the changes in their metabolism. One easy way to track calories is to keep a daily food journal, whether it’s a physical journal or a digital one through an app. This makes it easier to track calories and stay mindful about food choices.
Use weights that are the right size
When it comes to weight lifting, the key is to use a weight that is heavy enough to challenge the muscles. This will build and tone muscle more effectively than if someone chooses a lighter, manageable set of weights. As a rule of thumb, people should opt for weights that are light enough to lift for multiple sets, but heavy enough to make them struggle for the last few reps.
In a person’s 40s, it becomes increasingly more important to move throughout the day. A person can achieve this by making small changes to their daily routine, such as an after-dinner walk, choosing to take the stairs over the elevator, or parking just a little bit farther away in the parking lot. During the workday, desk-workers should make sure to pause every 30 minutes to stand up, stretch, and walk for a few minutes.