Better Exercise Results Does Not Mean More Exercise
Wouldn’t we all like better exercise results? Traditionally that meant more. More time, more repetitions, more sets, more speed, more something.
The question isn’t whether you’re exercising or not. It’s whether what you’re doing is really making a difference.
It’s so much like running a business that I can’t help but compare business and fitness.
The question for a business owner isn’t whether your busy or not, it’s whether you’re spending your time in the best activities. Are you prioritizing your time optimally?
I’ve observed so many times – in myself – and in other managers and fitness professionals a lot of busy work. There are people who will work constantly and they’re working hard. The problem is that they don’t see clearly what their time should be spent doing to make them more productive, and not just busy.
I don’t believe in time management and… I’m betting you’re the same. By the time you reach midlife you realize that time doesn’t bow down to our management of it.
We can only manage the energy we have. We can manage the focus and ability to concentrate.
When I work with women entrepreneurs or admins we don’t focus on the list of things that has to get done. We focus on the biggest priority items – those that get move the needle the most. When we’ve got them defined then it’s a matter of defining the best time for focus, concentration, and uninterrupted attention on those tasks.
Any of us can be busy. We can be well intentioned. But if we were just in action without a plan, if you weren’t the boss of your own business or department you’d probably be gone soon, right?
What if someone were paying you based on outcome and transformation? And at the end of the month, or quarter you hadn’t made any changes in the bottom line? (and maybe you’re exhausted!) Better exercise results, just like better job performance don’t necessarily happen because of more energy, effort, or time. It’s always about smarter work and the work that matters.
Sometimes that’s acceptable if… there is some evidence of prerequisite or actions that had to happen first before the big outcome in place.
So let’s look at your fitness activities and outcomes as if you were running the business of you. (You are!)
What transformation do you want?
If I’m the business owner or an investor in a business, I’m concerned with the profit not just the total numbers.
Now, all that said, let’s make sure we’re on the same page. I’m going to go off on a little tangent here.… we’re only talking about businesses that have an important mission statement. There’s a need and there’s demand and the business is serving people in a way that changes the quality of life. That’s the goal of Flipping 50, so I want to be totally transparent here, I am running a business, and yes it’s because I have purpose and a mission that gets me up every day. I also have a family and responsibilities to them and a life to live that I love.
Bottom line is important. (You want better exercise results, not just more exercise.) Profit margin is more important. I can’t be spending just as much as I’m making. That just isn’t sustainable. The more I make, the more good I can do with it by hiring other women, by supporting the fitness industry with conference presentations that remove me from being available in my business.
Where do you come in? If I can transition back out of this tangent…
Well, first if you’re in a business, or starting one, you need to embrace the power of the good you can do if you’re doing well and wise in your business.
Second, your body is your business.
Your energy and well being are your profit. The confidence you gain if you look and feel your best are your profit.
Women – in general – not all, have a hard time with this profit. Just like money isn’t bad when it’s used for good, feeling good – looking good- spending time to care for yourself isn’t bad if it’s used for good!
Weight though is not your real bottom line. Your body composition and your energy, ability to focus, concentrate, and physically do all the things you both need and want to do are a better profit margin. Signs and symptoms of good health now and for your future include
Take the quiz… of healthy habits of women who’ve flipped 50 successfully… it’s on the home page at flippingfifty.com
It’s simple pdf… not interactive and electronic… but for you to do now… then take again after a few weeks when you’ve begun to focus on those items
The reason you do something may not be at all the reason you think you do something.
What are you really hungry for?
Emotional eating could be something other than addiction.
Instead of a real desire for sugar – could you be craving social engagement?
Instead of addicted to some particular food could you be recreating a memory?
Instead of really enjoying a particular food is it a feeling you’re trying to get back to?
Exercise that counts most is what you want to determine. What’s the reason behind doing anything?
Weight training with biggest muscle groups:
Machine weights are good – but not all of them
Free weights – demonstrated in all of the Flipping 50 videos
What’s not going to help your metabolism, or help you go sleeveless –
Going right for the arm exercises if you’re not eating well, sleeping well, and first doing major muscle group exercises. Better exercise results have some logic behind the what you’re doing, why you’re doing it, and how you’re doing it.
So at the end of this episode, I want to challenge you.
If you’re exhausted and can’t lose weight… it may be that you need a special program temporarily targeting your adrenals and getting you back on your feet. Better exercise results won’t come if you’re digging yourself deeper in a hole.
If you want to change your body composition to lose belly fat… you don’t want to lose weight… did you know that most of the very things we do to lose weight backfire and put more weight (more fat weight) on us.
So I want you to go to the quiz first and foremost! Take that and determine if you need to make changes to put the business of your body first. If you’re already exercising and want better exercise results, you need to make a change somewhere. The quiz will help you determine where.
Then if you’re a fast –action taker… and you’re listening to this before Feb 1 2018 you can still get the After 50 fitness formula for women, my signature course and the bonus Bone Health mini course for a savings of $50 …. The rate on this combo goes up Feb 1- and believe me it’s worth every penny of the new rate… but my mission is to help as many women as possible.
If you’re not able to do private coaching- which would be the most amazing direct way to your goals and your highest priority exercise, exercise nutrition, and lifestyle habits, then this is the next best thing. Better exercise results usually come from you doing a targeted purposeful exercise program instead of randomly exercising.
I’ll also add a link about coaching in the notes so if it is right for you – you’re a busy business woman who wants to focus on breaking through old habits and understand the best way to reach fitness goals after 50 .. you can see how it works, who I am, and apply for a coaching spot.
Whether or not you like football, the Super Bowl is a great reason for a party, even if a party environment at home. Skip the little weenies in the crockpot and create some fun healthy Super Bowl recipes that don’t ruin the New Year you’re rocking. You’ll wake up ready for that Monday morning workout.
A few suggestions to prevent that Monday after Super Bowl food hangover:
You can make it active with pushups, wall sits, or planks the family can all get involved in. Pick your teams and when the opponent scores:
I like to make it cumulative. That is, the second time the other team scores, you have do 14 pushups… etc. Pick carefully! I did this with a high school friend during an interstate rivalry once and was pretty sore the next day! Dressed in a way not conducive to exercise? Save your point payoff for your Monday workout!
Try the healthy Super Bowl Recipes below!
Then share yours!
I’m giving away a Nutribullet (and collecting Flipping 50 community recipes to share with all our subscribers!)
Keep your recipe Flipping 50-program worthy: free of dairy, soy, gluten, wheat, and no added sugar, or corn.
Make it yours. If you’ve borrowed or modified a recipe, and you’re sending it as your own – great, that’s exactly what we’re looking for! Please don’t just share a recipe verbatim from someone without giving the author credit. Images are a plus, but not mandatory!
Send through the Contact form here on flippingfifty.com or if you’re a subscriber, respond to any email with your recipe. Every recipe you share is an entry. Send as many as you like… but hurry! Our panel sorts through them and chooses beginning Feb 1 (when the contest is closes). We’ll share a few more recipes before the big game… and the rest in a community cookbook later this month.
Then, subscribe at flippingfifty.com/active-aging-secrets to learn who the winner is and get the recipe book when it’s ready!
Hemp hearts are packed with protein and healthy fat. They can be a crunchy topping for salads and they get creamy when combined with oil so you can create dips and salad dressings with them for a dairy-free, soy-free fit food option.
Combine everything through the lemon juice in your Nutribullet and blend until smooth. Add remaining three ingredients and blend just to combine but leave some specks! Prepare it the day before for the best flavor.
Flip: Use it thick as a dip or add water for a salad dressing. Even for your Super Bowl party you can serve endive for dipping in a thinner dressing instead of a dip for heartier veggies.
Use an S blade in a food processor or add all ingredients to your Nutribullet. Process until smooth and then adjust seasonings. Refrigerate at least two hours for best flavor. Serve chilled. This is so good as a dip, or a hearty spread and filling for wraps, even to tossed with your favorite noodles. Add some protein and dinner is served!
Flip: Double it. You’re going to love it.
Video coming soon that will show and tell how I use this one! Subscribe!
Blend until smooth and all the oil is emulsified. Pour over family-sized salad (4 servings) and serve immediately.
Pairs well with your favorite version of traditional Greek salad with: chopped romaine, cucumber, tomatoes, red bell pepper, onion, kalamata olives and goat’s milk (optional).
Flip for a meal: Add salmon or chicken to top the salad off and a source of resistant carbs. So good!
Got a go-to recipe you love? Share it and enter the NutriBullet Super Bowl contest by Wed 11:59pm MST!! A Flipping 50 woman can’t have too many healthy options!
We grey. We wrinkle. We gain weight and lose strength. We die. But do we have to gain weight and lose strength? And can we not just increase longevity but increase the quality of the longer life? There’s plenty of emerging evidence that the right exercise slows your aging process. From bones, to muscles, and it begins with the expression of your genes. In this post I’ll share several study results that suggest your genes don’t have to determine your jeans.
You are in control.
Even a moderate amount of exercise changes the way your DNA methylation occurs. If you’re unfamiliar, that means you have far more optimal health and reduced risk of disease. OK, so that’s long term. What happens short term? We’re into immediate gratification, right? How much better does your butt look in those jeans?
Plenty. (In case no one mentioned it yet today, you still got it girl!)
Early studies featured healthy young men. You know as I mention regularly, you need to ask, “so what, I’m not 20 and not a young man?” What about me?? Well, I’m glad you asked. Follow up studies featuring older adults show several things happen with the right dose of exercise:
Mitochondria production is renewed. These are your powerhouses of energy. It was until fairly recently accepted that deterioration and decline of mitochondria was a natural part of the aging process. As I shared in a recent presentation, there’s more to that statement. First, it’s not a natural part of the aging process. It only happens if you don’t do anything to prevent it from happening. You don’t lose muscle and cause sarcopenia (significant loss of muscle that can occur with age) unless you let yourself lose muscle and get sarcopenia by avoiding exercise and having inadequate caloric intake, including specific amounts of protein at the right time.
Which kind of exercise helps most? Both aerobic and anaerobic exercise, that is, both the type that gets you breathing heavy and resistance training should be a part of your exercise program. I’ve added examples of interval training exercise toward the bottom of this post.
Regular exercise reduces oxidative stress-related disease. Exercise is stress, just to be clear. However, performing a progressive exercise program that includes both adequate stimulation and adequate recovery (nutrition and time between exercise) increases your overall resilience. Inflammatory markers are reduced in regular exercisers.
You can reset your circadian clock. There’s a positive association between physical activity and genes that affect your circadian clock. If you’re not sleeping well such that you’re too tired to exercise, don’t wait for a good night’s sleep to start. Start the exercise to improve the sleep.
Do change your exercise after a poor night’s sleep. Instead of your high intensity intervals try a short and lower intensity session, outdoors, if possible. Instead of high-load strength training, substitute yoga (not something that challenges balance) or stretching. You will elevate your core temperature with exercise, and increase melatonin production with exposure to sunlight. Both play a part in resetting your clock and increase the likelihood you’ll sleep better the next night.
Boost youthful muscle tissue. Studies show there’s an altered gene expression after acute exercise in both young and older adults after high-load resistance exercise. Older adults in fact respond even better as you’ll read in the next paragraph. The combination of adequate energy, protein, and resistance training increases immune function and repair in skeletal muscle.
Reverse cellular damage that has occurred from aging. Getting breathless with interval training changed the activity level in 274 genes of younger subjects. In older adults almost 400 genes were improved. There were positive changes from moderate exercise and from weight training as well but the interval training wins by a landslide in the change in gene expression.
That means moderate exercise is still your foundation. Don’t go dumping it completely. You build fitness on a foundation. Establish the following habits so that exercise slows your aging process without causing injury:
Are you performing strength training to fatigue twice a week? This is not about time. It’s a matter of quality. Reaching fatigue doing three exercises is better than stimulating 8-10 exercises with light or moderate weight training. The change in cellular activity of the muscles has to be great enough to influence gene expression. It’s relative to you. What’s light is something you can lift up to 28 times, what’s moderate you could lift 15-ish times, and what’s heavy you can lift 10 or fewer times. Exercise slows your aging process most if you pay attention to quality.
Are you performing interval training 1-2 times a week?
This is a matter of less time and higher intensity. Interval lengths of 20 seconds to two minutes will reap the greatest rewards provided they occur such that you need (and allow) recovery between them. Below are three sample Interval Training workouts.
Hard Interval Recovery Interval* Repeats
0:30 1:00- 1:30 8x
1:00 1:00- 2:00 5x
2:00 3:00- 4:00 4x
An interval is an all out effort. Just doing two different intensities isn’t enough. Your work interval has to be high enough intensity exercise for changes to occur. You should earn your recovery. *Recovery range means if you need longer take it! Don’t reduce it. Naturally, the longer the interval the lower the relative intensity will be. Your speed for instance would be reduced in order to run for two minutes compared to an all-out sprint for 30 seconds. [Substitute any mode of “sprint” for running including biking, elliptical, swimming, etc.]
Q: What about walking?
A: It’s the most often recommended exercise by doctors and physical activity guidelines. In recent studies supporting the fact exercise slows your aging process, beyond longevity, walking isn’t a feature. It’s a wonderful foundation. You can use it for intervals mixing in speed and hills or you can use walking for those moderate days. It definitely has a place but daily walks at the same pace same distance won’t improve your fitness and have yet to be associated with changed gene expression.
Q: What about the total amount of steps per day?
A: Your total number of daily steps is a good measure of your Non Exercise Activity Time, or N.E.A.T. It’s definitely associated more closely with obesity and overweight than is a formal “workout” of 30 to 60 minutes. That single hour will never overcome 23 hours of inactivity. So use it, but let that be a part of your whole program. Keep in mind there’s living longer, and living better during those years. Seek intervals and heavy weight training with a scientific connection to how exercise slows your aging process.
Q: What about the total amount of minutes of exercise per week?
A: The sliding scale recommending 150 minutes of activity a week or 75 of more vigorous activity don’t fully cover the type of exercise that changes gene expression. These are a good and basic beginning. These are foundational exercise goals. It’s more than a total of time; it’s a specific type and intensity of that exercise that is proving to turn back your clock. Exercise at a foundation level to decrease risk of disease and improve measures of health. Further improve your measures of health with higher intensity exercise.
Dial in if you truly want to live longer feeling younger.
Q: What if you like to do more exercise?
A: Two studies in the Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA) compared doing the minimum recommended 150 minutes with doing more. Subjects in one study who did 3x the minimum, that is 450 minutes per week, mostly walking, gained significantly more longevity. That’s where benefits plateaued, but for those exercise lovers who did 10x the recommended 150 per week, there was no increased risk. In other words, more exercise slows your aging process only up to a point and then it won’t harm you. As a reminder however, listen to your signs and symptoms right now.
If you’re a female at midlife (subjects were both men and women ages 21-98) going through stress or changes, dialing exercise right now may not be the right time. Know that if “more” is your happy place, it can work! If you feel your best there, love your energy and life, you aren’t getting “more” benefits, but you are not putting yourself at risk or reducing benefits either.
The second JAMA study that looked at moderate to vigorous activity in middle-aged and older adults showed that those who engaged in higher intensity exercise about 30% of their weekly exercise time had reduced mortality. That’s about right where 1-2 short interval training sessions, and 10 or 20 minutes of weight training twice a week fit into your week of moderate and lower level activity.
Want SUPPORT for your stronger, older, lifestyle? Everything you need for exercise, mindset, and exercise nutrition after 50. It’s different, but it works. It’s never too late. This is how exercise slows your aging process.
Simple soup and bowl recipes in this post make a flipping 50 lunch easy, effortless, and make exercise more likely to happen when your energy is high.
“Getting in protein at lunch is hard,” is a statement I hear all too frequently! Since protein is the key to lean muscles, more energy, strength and stamina to exercise in a way that will get and keep you young, I’ve made it easy to choose something here that will power up your flip.
Protein is also going to keep you sated longer and more alert to get things done with fewer mistakes.
Whether you’re at work, out and about, or just at home in the middle of something, having a few go-to’s on hand makes it easy to do the right thing, deliciously.
Saute garlic and onion until translucent. Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper. Add all the ingredients all to an Instant Pot or cook it on the stovetop. Season to taste at the end.
*add torn kale in final 10 minutes of cooking
Stovetop: bring to a boil and then reduce and simmer for an hour while you work out or do yoga!
Soup recipe credit: my goddess niece who’s recipes have to pass the 3-boy test.
Even if you’re not vegan, sometimes you just want to go plant-based. Make some roasted veggies and cook quinoa and beans on the weekend and you can pull that all into a bowl in seconds. Check your protein content! You need almost every item to pack protein (black beans, quinoa, yeast, pumpkin seeds, and hemp here) in order to meet at 20-30 gram range of protein that will carry you leanly through the afternoon! You could toss some shrimp on top to substitute for the beans if you’re a pescatarian.
Hemp Dressing ingredients:
Blend all dressing ingredients in your NutriBullet. [save $20 and up to $15 in shipping on your NutriBullet]
Keeps for a few days in the refrigerator. Hemp is packed with protein! You can also sprinkle hemp seeds on your bowl to top. The nutritional yeast adds protein and a great way to add B vitamins.
For the bowl: Arrange your bowl anyway you life for eye-appeal! This powerhouse beats a simple boring salad and pumps up your nutrient intake. You can add leafy greens on the bottom if you prefer. Or assemble all the ingredients and just warm it at lunch time. Top with the dressing and enjoy!
Make the simple soup recipe and the easy bowl ingredients ahead in minutes and you’ll be set for lunches all week.
Reader Hint: Play close attention to how you feel after lunch. Many of our program participants at first tell me they’ve got cravings in the afternoon, still want sugar, or don’t have energy to exercise after work when they finally have time. I always ask about breakfast and lunch. Enough protein? fat? fiber? and the right kind of carbs in the right amount? and no ingredients that you might unknowingly be sensitive to that make you crash?
Some times a simple soup can feel lighter and easier to digest so your energy is higher. Test yourself. Here’s the truth about the “same boring lunch” – your body likes routine. So if you’re a soup girl or a salad and sandwich girl, don’t ditch it, just get diversity into your choices. Make two soups or two bowls to rotate (don’t eat the same thing every day for a week), change the greens and toppings in a salad, and vary up the protein. Especially if you’re vegan… you’re more likely to become food sensitive when you eat the same thing over and over daily. A small bit of menu planning will insure you’ve got variety every day.
More variety and easier digestion mean more energy and more quality exercise more often. That’s flipping 50!
Last chance to get my signature course PLUS the Bone Health mini course at this rate (save $50 on the bundle right now!) *If you’re seeing this after February 1, 2018 it’s not too late to get both together, it’s just a little more – but worth it!
In this episode my guest is your body, sharing information about fat loss. Here’s what it wants to tell you.
If you’re struggling with fat loss listeners to this episode can take advantage of Fit-U at 50% off the regular rate right now during the Flip Your New Year special
After 50, you have less wiggle room. Before fat loss can happen you need to lose old thoughts about dieting and exercise. You may need to lose toxins stored in your fat, and reduce inflammation.
I walk you through all of it and how to exercise optimally for fat loss not just tired and sore; how to spare muscles loss, and feel better so you can sleep well, be more resilient, and have more stable energy. When you start caring for yourself you get on the path to permanent weight loss with lifestyle changes not a diet.
Foods you used to think are “healthy” may be causing your fat storage and preventing your fat burning. While you’ll give up a handful of them temporarily… you’ll have the opportunity to experience four different recipe books full of foods that are easy to prepare, simple to find, and taste wonderful. Plus, I’ll be there every week live with you responding to questions in the private Facebook group – and during the week jumping in daily to respond to questions.
Weight and fat loss results are unique to every individual going through the program. Decades-long habits and thoughts that have increased inflammation and toxic storage won’t change overnight but you will experience more energy, more clear thinking, and better sleep (if you need to improve it) within weeks.
You also will resist. Change is hard! I don’t ignore that – I coach you through it so that you can experience fat loss.
Let’s talk specifics so you can start some fat loss enhancing habits and stop some fat loss inhibiting habits today!
Resources and Links from today’s show:
GET A FREE COPY of HOT, NOT BOTHERED in your inbox in minutes: flippingfifty.com/hotnotbothered
Secure your Fit-U registration for 50% off at flippingfifty.com/fit-u in this LIMITED TIME OFFER.
What’s the best time to exercise for a good night’s sleep?
The answer is, it depends.
It’s not just a question of timing. It’s also a question of type.
While I would discourage you from doing your interval training right before bed, and then sprinting into your pajamas, it can be okay to do weight training and beneficial to do some yoga before you hit the hay.
There are different styles of yoga too, however. As a 34-year fitness instructor I know to be careful with my responses! Hot power yoga right before bed? I say no. To calming, restorative yoga? I say yes!
For the purpose of this blog, I’ll focus primarily on moderate to vigorous intensity exercise. Timing your lower-intensity activity properly can actually enhance your sleep, but it won’t necessarily hurt your sleep either, if done at other times in the day. Moral of the story: be active!
In the hormone-balancing scheme of things, I’ve written much about the morning being the best time to exercise. If you’re in a hurry, I’ll give you a spoiler alert and tell you that for breaking a bad sleep cycle, exercising early emerges as one of the very best things you can do. [Ultimately, sleep is a necessary part of hormone balance.]
Read on for more details on all the factors that affect your best time to exercise:
Early workouts reduce nighttime blood pressure. That improves the quality of your sleep and increases your time in deep sleep. Deep sleep is one of the best things that can positively affect your lean body composition this side of 50.
Whether you struggle to fall asleep, stay asleep, or both, consistent resistance training helps. Again, earlier in the day is the most ideal timeframe to do so, but any time of day contributes significantly. Resistance training is particularly helpful as a sleep aid, especially if you have anxiety or depression.
Change your morning exercise location for an even bigger boost. Boost your sleep-regulating hormone Melotonin naturally by moving your morning workout outside. Hike, bike, yoga—anything! I’ve even been known to give my neighbors a show by lifting weights on the deck – try it!
If hormones aren’t the only thing contributing to lost sleep, and you’ve got a longer history of insomnia, exercise can help. Great sleep doesn’t happen overnight (pun intended). Stick with it. Several of my clients have reported sleeping as much as two additional hours each night, after working at it consistently. One of them noticed significant improvement in both the number of times awoken throughout the night, as well as an increased deep sleep cycle. That not only improved her quality of life, but it finally got her off a weight loss plateau, too! She’s since lost 75 pounds in her 60s. Sleep makes all the difference!
If you’re 44-55, moderate- to high-intensity exercise improves sleep the most. If you’re 65 or older, moderate- and low-intensity exercise improves sleep most. My advice however, is to test it for yourself.
If what you’re doing now isn’t working:
P.S. You’re unique and so is your schedule. If exercise later in the day works best for you, don’t despair. Weight training done later in the day is better than not at all. Forego the late-day high-intensity interval training, however. In general, stay away from tough workouts for at least four hours before bed.
Do remember, a quality workout takes minutes, not hours.
This post was sponsored by the great folks at Sleep Number.
This podcast is focused on women’s wellness coaches Kim Acedo and Debra Atkinson. What works and what doesn’t for personal health changes when you are the coach?
Kim Acedo, MS, CHWC works exclusively with women in midlife who have been putting their health and self-care on the back burner for most of their lives and now in their midlife years say “It’s MY turn to take care of ME!”
Through her virtual coaching programs, Kim empowers her clients to build confidence, resilience, hope, self-motivation, and make lasting changes to their health and well‐being. Women’s wellness coaches support a myriad of goals for their clients, often getting them unstuck or accelerating growth in a way none of us can do for ourselves.
She partners with her clients to get “unstuck” and discover goals and strategies based on their core values and motivators in order to bring about the healthy lifestyle they desire.
Kim has a Master’s degree in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Exercise Science and is a Certified Health & Wellness Coach through Wellcoaches School of Coaching.
Kim and I are just two women’s wellness coaches having a conversation and we invite you eavesdrop on us. We have a lot in common and some distinguishing factors as well. Kim, similar to me, was a personal trainer for 15 years (most of her clients were women in midlife) before becoming a virtual health and self-care coach. We’ve become women’s wellness coaches specializing in the midlife woman – body, mind, and soul, and we apply some of those strategies we use to our own lives.
Kim doesn’t prescribe exercise to her current clients. In fact, she doesn’t prescribe anything to her clients like she did when she was a trainer (meal plans, workouts, etc.).
We both have roots in the physical and yet recognize that the above the shoulders conditioning…what I call the most important 6-inches to get in shape – is the most important part and start of change.
Kim and I compare and contrast our personal habits. We’re giving a behind-the-scenes peek at coaches. Do women’s wellness coaches take their own great advice? You decide!
This is wake-up-to-bedtime with two women’s wellness coaches. What’s a healthy work day-in-the-life, and what are our challenges? We dive into habits we love and hate for ourselves, and how we have adopted them or work we know we still personally have to do.
As women’s wellness coaches we both readily acknowledge that knowing science of fitness, and the psychology of change, we’re still both very much in the boat with you.
What’s working for these two women’s wellness coaches:
How about you?
Connect with Kim:
Facebook page: www.facebook.com/TransformationWellnessForWomen
Facebook group: www.facebook.com/groups/HealthAndSelfCareForWomenInMidlife
Thank you for leaving a rating (and subscribe!) in iTunes!
If you’d like to be a guest on Flipping 50 as either an expert or to get coaching contact Debra. email@example.com
Getting stronger as you age is a reality seen with more and more frequency. There are plenty of reasons why YOU can get stronger as you age whether you’ve flipped 50, are still approaching it, or you’re long past it!. And there are perks. For instance, arms aside, strong older women earn more.
Why? In part because they handle stress better. They have more responsibilities, more to do, more people to oversee AND they’re happier.
How do you get stronger with age? I’ll explore it in this post. Women who do aren’t born with any magic spoon but they do have habits. They specifically have certain habits and rituals that they do consistently. Those habits get consistent, repeatable results.
Women in their 50’s and 60’s are often at the peak of their careers. As many women in our Flipping 50 community, however, are instead at a transition in their lives, possibly teetering on the edge of getting to the peak of that career. A relationship in question, a career change, or a bucket list items often act as catalysts for women. While some women – in either situation- see themselves slowing down, others are starting new businesses and taking up triathlon for the first time or first time in decades.
So what’s the difference between successfully thriving women getting stronger as they age and those feeling like the best is behind them?
One of those habits is exercise. It’s specifically strength training. They embrace the two-for-one benefit of less time and more results that come from strength training.
Because of strength training, they get more results. Resistance training is the gift that keeps on giving. You start because of the physical slide gravity is causing. Body parts on a race to your socks, or saggy skin around your arms or legs. Whoa!
I’m not ready to look older even though I am older.
-said most women everywhere
Good news is you don’t have to, at least not in the once-accepted ways. You could be as much as 23 years younger (or older) than your biological age. Yes, that much, according to internist Dr. Michael Roizen. Roizen uses the Real Age test to determine how your habits influence your rate of aging.
Maybe it’s a diagnosis of osteoporosis. Maybe a doctor has said medication is the next step if you don’t change something. Strength training gets on your radar. Since it’s less common that a 60 or 70-year old woman today lifted weights regularly in her young adulthood without interruption, starting could easily make you stronger as you age. Stronger relative to what? We’re not just comparing you if you don’t strength train to you if you do. Older you can get stronger as you age relative to younger you.
No matter what physical siren call get’s you started that’s not what keeps you going. It’s not just muscles (and bones) influenced by weight lifting that creates strong older women. It’s self-concept that changes. STRONGER as you age is so much more than being able to lift a 10-pound dumbbell this month when you were hefting the 5-pound dumbbell last month.
Which comes first the chicken or the egg? The dumbbells or the habits? Do strong older women already have good habits or do their habits improve when they begin lifting?
Consistently successful women – let’s define as high earners, leaders, influencers, higher GPAs, respected by their peers, CEOs, involved and happier (because let’s face it, there are a lot of successful people who are really unhappy and can’t enjoy it)– tend to have habits they consistently honor.
Yes, they work more. They have more responsibility. They also make time for self care consistently. They will request, demand, or take care of getting themselves the kind of food and maintaining a schedule that serves their energy.
They may be first to leave the party to go to bed knowing they thrive on a certain amount of sleep and suffer without. They don’t see it as a weakness. They may not enjoy anything at a dinner party (but don’t skip it) and instead bring along prepared food or have it delivered.
Which comes first? Do you become successful so you can start taking better care of yourself? Or do you start taking better care of yourself to be more successful? I suspect you know the answer to that. There are those strong older women who have successfully have always done this, but… if you want to get stronger as you age know there are women who only recently determined that they ARE their own hero. It’s possible to begin it at any time.
A successful woman may work long hours to complete a project or see something through. She doesn’t however, let it consume her or sabotage her health, nor does she sacrifice her health habits.
She doesn’t think…
… but that means I have to get up at 4 in the morning and that’s so hard.
… I have to get up at 6:30 and get breakfast for two kids and work 8 hours.
… she must have a trainer and I just can’t afford that.
… we socialize so much that it’s hard.
… I have a long commute so I’m gone 10 hours every day during the week.
… I have to eat so many meals out, it’s impossible to eat well.
… I travel frequently for work so it’s hard to stick with anything.
… I have older parents and young adult kids both depending on me – I’ve always been the one people count on.
Those are mindsets.
Mindsets of excuses.
She’s overcome those obstacles and so can you.
You say you’re so busy that the only time you have is 5am (insert 4 or 6 as it fits your life)? It’s more important for you that you get up, have a little intension time and get it done so you have more energy and start your day already having a sense of accomplishment. You can’t serve anyone unless you’ve served yourself. Self-care is not optional. You push those dumbbells around for 10 or 20 minutes and you won’t be pushed around by people, projects or responsibilities. You will change the way you perform all day long.
You have friends? How nice! Do they want you to be healthy or do they want to sabotage your health and your goals? Will they support you or will they be threatened and want you to eat, drink, and be merry (for a few minutes and defeated and fatigued the rest of the time) with them? What kind of friends are we really talking about? Are you socializing because you LIKE these people and they like you or because it’s the thing to do, the “in crowd” you want to associate with? At 50 and older aren’t you ready to be authentic and dump doing things because it’s expected?
Here’s a prediction. At some point someone in that social circle that’s putting pressure on you – or so you think – will have a health issue. That mild heart attack or diabetes diagnosis? Will mean they suddenly are forced to make dietary and lifestyle choices that you are trying to choose now. Unfortunately, when it happens like this… you don’t get as many rewards as when you choose healthy habits earlier and reap dividends like greater energy, better fitting clothes, more happiness. Instead you get the possibility of decreasing meds that cause crappy side effects. You choose. Sooner or later most women who have not voluntarily made time and commitment to themselves will be forced to do so. You’re going to live longer, experience more losses and life changes. You need stress resilience.
What if you had a heart attack? Good food and exercise are both well-accepted as medicine. Are you taking your medicine? Stress relief, though, is the Queen of health. You’ll be less stressed if you eat well and exercise regularly. You build your body up with more resilience and your brain also benefits.
Stress, my dear, is a killer. Not just of your waistline, shapely arms, and mental clarity. Directly, not indirectly, it is tied to over 80 diseases. Let’s stop pretending we are so important that we use “stressed” and “busy” as responses to “How are you?” We’re choosing it. Unless you are actively seeking support to decrease your level of stress you’re choosing to be stressed. In fact, saying it over and over again reinforces it as your truth.
It’s juicing you.
It’s like crack to a cocaine addict, or alcohol to an alcoholic. Living on stress-induced adrenalin can momentarily make you feel important and purposeful… will all come crashing down.
There’s a Big Benefits list associated with getting into the strong older women society. They include:
Long-existing research indicates that the similarity between college age and middle-aged women’s (mid 40s) emotional and cognitive response to strength training is high. I lead with that line because I’m sharing studies here featuring college-age females that show an increase in self-confidence, and better body esteem. As you know, here at Flipping 50 is cognizant about filtering research that applies to YOU. Knowing there is a strong correlation in this case, the research is pertinent. Though we can’t always, in this case, we can draw conclusions about weight training in older women from studies featuring younger women. Resistance training benefits women at any age in psychological confidence and stress reduction (if programming is applied thoughtfully with “her” in mind).
In fact, the magnitude of change in self-confidence and body-esteem with strength training was nearly identical in younger and older women. Just a few benefits of resistance training for women include:
Self-concept increases in young college women who lift weights two or three times a week. At a time when every tempting but equally sabotaging thing you could possibly want is at your fingertips or down the hall, this is surely a good thing.
Strength training is Mood-Altering. If you want to increase depression, fatigue, and tension, use lighter weights with more repetitions and less rest between. Unfortunately, that is almost exactly the recipe given to women in their circuit training classes.
Body sculpting and bodybuilding routines consisting of local muscle fatigue or a comprehensive workout in a short amount of time subject you to psychological and physiological stress. In order to maintain a good attitude and motivation to continue you have to be a more goal-oriented person in the first place and be provided with a creative workout design with a variety of reinforcements.
Anxiety and depression are reduced in women with optimal resistance training programming. However, strict adherence to a limited diet and to a weight lifting schedule focused on body transformation or figure competition results in more depression, tension and confusion during the final push or reach for a goal.
It’s not been uncommon for me (in my role as a fitness coach, and prior lecturer in Kinesiology) to hear “… I want to lose those last few pounds so I’m going to fast for a few more days,” or “… I am going to increase the workouts I do to get serious about results.” It gives me cause for alarm. Rarely does a final push result in permanent results. That overnight success is usually one regular habit after another that no one else noticed, until they do. Even in this era of “fasts” becoming the thing you may think is a magic pill, it’s taking a year of a few days per month to lose a few pounds permanently and the bigger changes are in blood work and health risks, not in the scale.
Productivity benefits. What often happens with a midlife female (keep in mind, already more susceptible to negative effects of stress) is a negative stress response from her body. She begins to feel fatigue, think constantly about what she’s eating (or not) and how and when she’s going to exercise again. Instead of a mood boost for productivity and relationship-enhancement it begins to be the relationship she has. There’s not an escalating reward for the investment of time and energy – there’s a downward spiral in quality of life. With a regular sustainable exercise and nutrition plan, however, productivity is increased.
Brain fog lifts. Strength training doesn’t just build biceps it results in more brain matter and better cognitive function. It’s believed to be due in part to increased growth factor. You’ll have better problem solving skills, better memory. Traits like these are helpful anywhere but may be another reason strong older women earn more. Handling stress better just helps them enjoy the fruits of their labor better.
Boost metabolism & reshape your body. Strength training is the only way you’re going to sculpt the body of your dreams. “Exercise” of other types may boost your mood while you’re doing it and after until you need another hit. It may help you lose weight (if it’s the right type and timing for you). But you’ll have the same body you find in the mirror or that put you at risk for injury or disease now.
“The only real way women can increase metabolism, without drugs, is to lift weights and maintain or increase lean mass.”
That weight you’re putting on around the middle will respond better to weight training than simply cardio. The sacrificial interval training lamb does not change your body’s shape. No, girlfriend, weight training will do that. Faster. It will begin it noticeably in about a month. That is usually enough for you to gain some motivation to boost your commitment.
Getting stronger as you age requires less motivation than it does commitment.
What are you committing to? How much lifting does it take? Twice a week, but not your mother’s workout or even your 20-years-ago-workout, is going to make you stronger as you age. If you’re heading into an hour-long class of lifting with light weights and a lot of repetitions, think again. Unless you’ve got an injured joint to coddle, pull up your big-girl LuLulemons and lift something that feels a little heavy.
Are you planning to lift big bags of potting soil or dog food? Or cherub-like grandchildren? Hefting your big suitcase? Then you’re going to need it. Best be prepared than injured.
You may want the physical changes that accompany getting stronger as you age from exercise. You know, the chiseled arms, or the line down the side of your thighs you envy in other women. But the transformation you’ll feel inside is an entirely other ball game. You don’t just begin to lift more weight. You are lifted. Mood, confidence, and the way you carry yourself across a room change.
You don’t just begin to lift more weight. You are lifted.
Strength training is the most time efficient exercise for both visible and intangible change.
Women most often start exercise to lose weight (though I am not ignoring you if you have other motives – I know you’re out there!). Women start at a significantly higher rate than men. They also unfortunately tend to drop out at astoundingly higher rates than men.
Why do women drop out? Women are too often thrown into or gravitate toward a strict diet and incredibly time-consuming, inappropriate exercise programs (not even, I might add, developed based on the sparse 39% of exercise research about women). As a woman with wisdom of life experience you’re at an advantage. You already know, some things are harder and and some are easier and some of those harder ones are worth sticking out. You’ve already gotten stronger as you age in some ways.
An exercise program that’s too intense too fast or too restrictive at onset, requires (what turns out to be a low percent of) already goal-driven women used to starting something they don’t know anything about that are willing to figure out. If you have a lack of self-confidence (if even situationally), anxiety or depression when you start, you’re more likely to be a victim of fallout. You won’t be able to stick it out long enough to experience the reason women stick with exercise.
Women keep exercising because of the competence it creates that spills over to every area of life.
No exercise is faster at creating both physical benefits and emotional competence than strength training.
No exercise is better for getting stronger as you age.
Are you toxin-free or are some lingering habits keeping you from losing weight?
Diets about food are abundant! Consider this the “other” diet. This, is the toxin-free diet.
What about detoxing from all the chemicals and pollutants that confuse your hormones, slow your metabolism, and make you feel like it’s your fault? You’re exercising after all and eating “healthy” but nothing, nada, no progress? Well, never fear, it doesn’t take less food, more exercise, in fact quite the opposite though it does take paying attention to some other things.
The hot topics this time of year are health and fitness. Most often there’s a buzz about a diet of some kind. You most likely found me and are here too find answers to fitness after 50. The right nutrition for right now, not a diet is a part of the answer for that. Since I’m a believer I’m preaching to the choir with this Flipping 50 community, I just wanted to post a gentle reminder that toxins are everywhere, not just in our food and water.
If we don’t weed them out, like a garden, the fitness you’re working for may not have a chance to flower.
Here are six areas you may need to go toxin-free on during this health-focused time of year (I’m not including people – that’s up to you!). They each either contribute to your health or to your stress.
they both help me fight off the dry, stale air in hotels, airplanes, airports and deal with changes in climate.
The six other areas of a toxin-free diet lifestyle I mentioned on this super short episode that I suggest you tackle one a week are:
A Tech Cleanse
Cleaning and Air Care
Share your favorite ways to clean and purify. Using essential oils? Making your own soaps and lotions?
Please leave rating in iTunes! We really appreciate you!
Chances are if you’re reading this you’ve got intentions about getting fit after 50.
I just returned from the gym. It was 5:45 pm, on a Monday, in January.
Actually, whatever you just imagined, it wasn’t quite that bad! There were parking spaces and really it was kind of quiet in the weight room and cardio area. Must have been the warm weather today that allowed Coloradans outside.
Yet, this time of night isn’t without some bumping into big young guys in the weight room anywhere in America.
I don’t wear ear buds & ipods at the gym so it’s hard not to overhear. That’s so much kinder than saying I was eavesdropping. Two college-age guys were excitedly chatting about a business plan and an app they’ve got in the works, well at least the idea stage right now.
Had I not wanted to rat on myself, and the fact I was totally listening, I would have injected a comment. I didn’t. I did smile ear to ear though, thinking what a funny comment.
“The hardest thing is deciding,” one said. “It’s committing. I feel like that day is the hardest day. Once you do that everything is easy.”
LMAO on the hip sled as they were bench-pressing mirror muscles, I thought, we’ll see.
See, I believe THAT day is the EASIEST day! It’s every day that follows that is hard.
Whether you’re talking about a business plan, a project, a marriage, or having a baby or … your getting fit the easiest day is deciding, signing up for the program, setting the New Year’s intention (or whatever you fondly call them), declaring I’m in for good out loud to the universe and maybe God and everyone you know… that’s easy.
Then there is the follow through on the commitment …
… when the alarm goes off at 4am (and it’s dark and it’s warm under the covers)
… when your spouse does something that really makes you angry or hurts your feelings
… when the cuddly bundle of joy you had is projectile vomiting across the room for the first time or has colic and you can’t stop it
… when it’s intimidating to walk into a new gym, new weight room
… when you don’t like the way you look and feel in your exercise clothes let alone the way you feel hot and sweaty
… when you have to travel for work and plan ahead how to order at restaurants and bring healthy food in your suitcase
… when you don’t like what your trainer has planned and you throw every possible obstacle out there for why you can’t do it
… when you’re full of excuses and it’s really not about the program, the trainer, but it’s about you doubting you
… when you want to believe that anyone who is getting fit after 50 must have a luxurious life with maids, and trainers, and no laundry to do and more hours in the day than you … but even you know that’s false.
That’s my observation about the hardest day on the journey to getting fit after 50. It’s every one after that first day you jubilantly declare your optimistic future dreams. Those days when you have to roll up your sleeves, not because it’s always about manual labor or hard work… but because it is about changing your habits and your mindset about the way it was going to be.
You are stubborn; a creature of habit. So am I.
Habit gravity is like the devil.
When you’re committed you’ve decided everything is “figuroutable” and even if the GPS you thought you were setting isn’t going to get you there, you do the U-turn and keep going.That is darn frustrating, right? To realize in the hurried state we’re always in that you’ve been driving in the stinking wrong direction?
So it is if you’re “eating healthy” or exercise hard every day and can’t lose a pound of weight. Not necessarily the right answer and usually the dead end for a woman whose started peri-menopause or is over 50.
Every day that you drop a little of your resistance to the plan that is right and you trust that process instead of giving into that devil-like resistance keeping you from what you want, that’s a good day.
When you recognize that you have resistance before you sabotage yourself with resistance again, that’s a good day.
If you want some support reducing your resistance and getting fit after 50 click here. If you have more than 20 pounds to lose, click here instead – for my course specifically designed for fat burning, for women, over 50 based on science, and over 30 years of primary research working with midlife and older women.