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Where did the years go?? It’s so true when they say that father time waits for no one. As we enter into our 30s, 40s, and 50s, we may still feel young, but we cannot deny that our bodies will inevitably begin to show signs of aging. Remember that first gray hair and when those fine lines started to appear? I was devastated!! While I now look at those things as evidence of enjoying my life (with a little help from hair coloring and anti-aging beauty products ☺), I feel that the most important anti-aging approach is to do my part in staying healthy and active. Here are some tips to get you started:
Get a routine physical and screening.
It’s always a good practice to schedule an appointment with your primary healthcare practitioner (PHP) for an annual check up. Your PHP will be able to alert you to any particular health concerns and how to manage them. Additionally, a PHP can best advise on specific diet and exercise programs for your needs. As an added resource, review my article: Health & Fitness 101: Know Your Numbers.
Maintain a healthy and balanced diet
In my teens and 20s, I could eat anything! I also did not pay much attention to the nutritional aspects and ingredients of the food I was eating. This ultimately led to weight gain in my late 20s. I also noticed that I developed some food sensitivities over the years as well.
As a mature adult, maintaining a healthy and balanced diet is critical for overall health and well-being. So, stock up on those fruits and veggies. Adjust your diet to incorporate foods that are rich in healthy fats, nutrients, and minerals. For additional tips, review my articles on 10 healthy food options to stock in your fridge and pantry and 5 staples for your freezer.
And yes, it is more than ok to indulge in a tasty treat every now and then. The important thing is to not make a frequent habit out of it.
Incorporate cardio activity.
Cardio activity is any exercise that increases your heart rate and blood circulation throughout your body. This is essential to maintaining a healthy heart. Your heart is a muscle that, without strengthening, will weaken over time and could potentially lead to developing negative health effects including coronary related issues and diabetes. Incorporating cardio activity into your lifestyle and fitness routines can help to combat these negative effects.
Utilize strength training to keep muscles strong.
Did you know that our muscle mass declines with age beginning at about age 40? On average we lose 1% of muscle mass each year and that rate picks up after age 50! The good news is that this does not have to be an inevitable fact of aging. You can gain muscle back with regular strength-training in your fitness program. It’s also important to note that muscles burn more calories than fat. Therefore, building muscle contributes to more calories being burned each and every day which helps you to maintain a healthy body weight.
Increase body flexibility
As a youth, I took flexibility for granted. I could never do a full split, but close enough. I could easily do back bends and touch my toes. Now, it’s a different story. While I do not aspire to be as flexible as I was, I’ve been working hard to increase my flexibility with yoga and experience added benefits as well. Body flexibility enables us to perform daily routine activities with relative ease of effort. This is something many of us take for granted. However, flexibility tends to decline over time, which can lead to poor posture habits, reduced mobility of joints, and injury. Therefore, incorporate stretch postures into your fitness routine to improve your range of motion.
Maintain your ideal body weight.
The ideal body weight is different for individuals based on gender, height, and body frame. To determine ideal body weight, you can consult your PHP and/or refer to resources that are readily available online. Carrying excess weight significantly increases your risk for developing negative health issues including heart disease and diabetes. Therefore, once you’ve assessed what is ideal for you, stay diligent to ensure you stay within a healthy range.
Aging is inevitable, but it can be done gracefully. By incorporating these tactics you will be stronger, feel more energized, and better equipped to manage any unexpected health obstacles you may face.
– Wishing you continued success in your fitness journey!Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2016 Nichole Michele