Despite popular opinion, there’s no reason why you can’t be in great shape over a certain age, putting all the 20-something-year old’s to shame. However, in order to look after your health, it’s important to start working out smarter as you get older to avoid injury and physical decline. Here’s our top tips:
Working the same muscles over and over again is a recipe for disaster…. or at least injury! Make sure you’re bringing all the key components of fitness (endurance, strength, balance and flexibility) into your training schedule and are focusing on strengthening your weaker muscles and minimising muscle imbalances. This will make sure your body continues to perform well and will help you avoid issues such as injury and inflexibility.
Stretching and Rehab Work
There’s some logic in the expression, “you don’t bounce back like you did in your 20’s”. You might have been able to get away with skipping your cool down or mobility work when you were younger, but this is going to have much more impact as you get older. Including more recovery time into your week is key, including plenty of stretching, foam rolling and mobility exercises.
Healthier Lifestyle in General
This leads us on to our next point: adopting a healthier lifestyle in general as we age. This includes your workout regime, but also means focusing on eating a wholesome, balanced diet and getting better sleep. Not only will this improve your performance in the gym, but it will also mean you’re living a healthier, happier life.
Consider a PT and/or Physio
Asking for help from an expert is always a great idea if it’s in your means, especially with the increased risk of injury as you age. Visiting a personal trainer or physiotherapist will help you to identify weaknesses and imbalances and make sure you’re working specifically on improving them over time.
If you’ve been in great shape most of your life, you need to be realistic - you can’t expect to lift as much and run as fast as you did when you were 20. It takes longer to build muscle and lose body fat, however, it’s not all bad! It’s said that you have stronger muscle memory and muscle maturity as you age - so you should be able to train less, at a lower intensity and show results sooner. Take your time and set realistic goals and you’ll find yourself making gradual progress without burning out.