Still Working Out As You Get Older
I am not a licensed trainer currently, a physical therapist, or a former professional athlete, but I have focused on keeping healthy by exercising since I was in my 20’s. My focus has been on improving my health and fitness during the entire time. I am a lot older now. I am not the ultimate example of the fit 40 something year old, but I have no lower back pain, am injury free and rarely have other aches or pains. I am able to work on soccer drills with my daughter and play catch with the same little girl for baseball and basketball. The best benefit of all is that I rarely sit on the sidelines for anything else life may throw at me.
Here is the criteria I now use for every exercise session. No injuries when I exercise. No boredom when I exercise. No dreading exercise time every day. I think about all of the benefits to me and my family. No exercise program taking up the best part of my day. No resting all day after exercise. My life is not exercise. It is just a tool. I do want to be able to handle any stress, challenges, and opportunities that come my way. Here are additional requirements for any exercise, fitness and diet program that I will participate in. No exercise time more than 75 minutes. Exercise at home if I do not make it to a gym or club. Balance the stress I put on muscle groups. Listen to my body and adjust the intensity and duration of any particular exercises, this is particularly good for your health and fitness goals.
Here is a list of the particular exercise routines that I have found work the best for me. Maybe they will work out well for you too.
Workout on a recumbent bike (laid back, reclining position)
Alternate sprints for 30 seconds with 2 minute cool down periods .Work up to a combination of 8 of these in 20 minutes followed by a 10 minute cool-down.
You have just spent 30 minutes building your heart and muscles. On alternate days do the following trying to increase your repetition. Body weight exercises that require only two pieces of equipment, the pull-up bar and the floor.
Start with modified push-ups, with my knees and hands on the floor- progress to military push-ups Knee bends where I only move a few inches up and down- progress up to 100 repetitions.
Pull-ups with my feet on a box to adjust the weight I am lifting- progress to free hanging pull-ups.
Calf raises on both feet to start- progress to one foot at a time.
With these exercises you are giving your heart and muscles a great workout and not spending your days sore, exhausted or frustrated. Consistency is the key. How important is your health to the quality of your life? Really! The theme here is not to blast my muscles with incredible weights and low repetitions constantly.
I want my body to handle many repetitions of every movement just like the movements required by my everyday life. Heavy weights can be awesome if done correctly and when you know the right time for doing heavy weights. You certainly won’t necessarily have the best health by constantly doing heavy weight. It’s best to take a break from heavy lifting and mix it up from time to time. My life away from exercise is not going to be “3 sets at 80% of my lifting ability”. I want to be able to keep going all day in whatever I do. Keep that in mind and plan your exercise accordingly. Drink plenty of water and stretch after you are warmed up and when you are finished exercising. Doing the things mentioned above will work wonders for your health and fitness desire.