Having celebrated the fiftieth birthday, a lot of people start thinking that the good days are long gone, their bodies get tired much faster, and there’s nothing left from a good physical form. Such depressive approach to aging is fundamentally wrong. As practice shows, good health has to be maintained at any age.
According to psychologists, after you turn fifty, your life only starts to get interesting, and a full rest, healthy food, and proper physical exercises will help keep yourself in shape for many years to come, remaining open to everything new. Plus, there are a couple more secrets, which we’ll talk about in this article.
Keeping fit after 50
If you want to remain active and full of energy after 50 or older, you must constantly look after your physical condition. However, before drawing up a training plan, you should consult a medical specialist who’s familiar with your personal medical record. This advice applies to everyone without exception. Older people are at greater risk to their health, being vulnerable to such conditions as osteoporosis or arthritis. Consultation with a doctor is the first step.
Fitness after 50 is not so time-consuming. If you want to stay in shape, you need some moderate physical exercises: 20 minutes of easy jogging and 15-30 minutes of strength training a few days a week should be enough. After all, we don’t want to get things even worse, right? Try different approaches to your training, and find some time to try such sports disciplines as cycling, swimming or skiing (if you have such opportunity).
You don’t need to start visiting the gym right away; you can make physical exercises an ordinary part of your daily routine. For example, when cooking something for dinner, use a jar of peas as a dumbbell and put your hands to work. During dishwashing, try half-squatting after each washing a plate or cup. One of the main problems connected to aging is the lack of flexibility. If you don’t do sports at all, try to stretch from time to time at least. Turn on your favorite music and do stretching exercises right in your bedroom.
Not a step back
If you’re engaged in regular high-intensity training, never miss your exercises, no matter how hard it becomes to do them every year. One single concession to your laziness, and you’ll most likely never return to sports again. Remember, only good motivation helps us to keep ourselves in shape. Constantly remind yourself why you decided to start training.
Add some variety
Keep surprising your body! The choice is huge: swimming, bike training, pilates, crossfit training, or a 2-mile race. If you perform the same exercises each day, week after week, your body will eventually need less and less effort to maintain such a monotonous activity. When trying something new, it starts working at full strength again. Changing the types of training also gives the body a rest.
After we turn 50, our coordination gets worse. An excellent way to solve this problem is to start cycling. Such activities as tai chi or yoga may also work, but they are not so beneficial for health.
Getting fit after 50 is a very broad concept, and everyone understands it in their own way. Before you start visiting the gym or pay for personal lessons with a coach or a fitness card, think about what goal you set for yourself. It’s one thing if you just want to play volleyball with your children and grandchildren from time to time, and if you plan to run a marathon, it’s a completely different goal. Exercises, however important, are only part of a healthy lifestyle that will help you stay in great shape until old age. Proper nutrition, occasional walks in the fresh air, a healthy sleep, quitting bad habits, and good mood will help you achieve the desired goal.
Our metabolism changes with age. As studies show, when we grow older, we need to add more protein to the diet. But this doesn’t mean that you need to start eating more; you can increase your protein intake with carbohydrates. Protein promotes muscle growth, which is pretty important when getting fit after 40 or 50, while an excess of carbohydrates can lead to obesity due to interaction with chemicals in the body responsible for fat accumulation. When we are young, testosterone allows us to consume carbohydrates without the threat of obesity, but at a later age, it can no longer cope with its task.
After 50, the immune system gets increasingly weakened, and the risk of undergoing all sorts of diseases, especially cardiac ones, increases several times. Products containing antioxidants will help strengthen your body. According to nutritionists, vegetables, berries and fruits, green tea, and coffee have a particularly beneficial effect on our immune system.
A diet that will help you stay fit in your 50’s is about consuming certain types of products and giving up some unhealthy food. It’s better to reduce the daily caloric intake to 1600-1800 kcal, but you must not starve. In order to keep your weight and health at a normal level, it’s better to give up or limit the consumption of the following foods: smoked products, carbonated drinks, pickles, spicy and strongly salty foods, any confectionery and flour products, fried and fatty foods, and white bread. Meat should be consumed no more than 2-3 times a week.
A 50-year-old man’s diet should include fatty marine fish and seafood, low-fat sour-milk and dairy products, hard cheeses, fresh fruits and vegetables, legumes, but not more than 100 g per day, pure green tea, greenery, raw rice, cereals, and asparagus. Vegetables, meat, and fish must not be fried; you need to eat only cooked or steamed products. At this age, you should limit your drinking and stop smoking.
Nutritional supplements needed to stay fit in your 50’s
Vitamins are recommended for almost everyone, and people over 50 are no exception. Since at this age, people consume fewer calories, they may lack nutrients from everyday nutrition. Good multivitamins will fill this gap, strengthening the immune system and overall health.
2) Fish oil
An adequate intake of fatty acids is important for maintaining health, and a calorie-restricted diet can lead to the body lacking them. Fish oil also “amortizes” the joints, participating in the metabolism, which is extremely important if you plan to stay active. Consuming fish oil also means reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s and other diseases.
3) Additives for joints
Since joint health is extremely important for performing movements, it’s strongly recommended to take some supplements for your joints. Over the years, joints wear out, so taking glucosamine, an important component of cartilage tissue, would be a wise decision.
4) Protein and amino acids
The process of losing muscle in people, who are not engaged in strength training, begins in young years, together with a drop in testosterone levels. Regular exercises in the gym will help stop this process or even reverse it. In this case, the proteins (amino acids) will become building material for muscle fibers. It’s very difficult to consume the necessary amount of protein from regular meals. Protein and amino acids help out in this situation.
Get enough rest
A good rest gives much-needed energy for your body. With age, having enough sleep becomes more important when recovering after workouts. A good night’s sleep is like filling the tank of your car with premium gas. Men over fifty should do everything possible to improve the quality of their sleep. To do this, you have to change the conditions in which you usually fall asleep: just peace and total darkness. Begin to avoid factors that can excite your nervous system at least an hour before going to bed.
A bit of love
It’s believed that in old age, one can forget about any intimate life. But why do so? Your kids are grown-ups now and live their own lives, you’ve probably made your career by now, and there is much more time left for personal life. Besides, having sex once or twice a week strengthens the immune system, contributing to the development of antibodies that protect the body from minor diseases.
Now that you know how to keep fit after 50, you probably understand that no matter what your age is, and at what stage of life you are now, it’s never too late to bring your body back to normal. You can always start improving your health and well-being. However, to choose the right exercises, it’s important to consider the physical needs of your body, which largely depend on age.