Walking mistakes may be keeping you from your best results. Doctors often recommend walking as a best exercise. However, the blanket “walk” advice leaves a lot of information out. You’ve got less room for error after 50, especially if you’re in menopause.
If you’ve added a walking program – or plateaued using one – or you’re thinking about starting a walking program, avoiding these mistakes will help you keep moving in a more effective way.
This episode is sponsored by CBD for Life. If this time of year finds you a little sore from workouts, CBD is a new tool in the toolbox, providing the anti-inflammatory properties without the THC or feelings of being high. I use mine most often on my upper back and neck, though also recently apply to my quads as I’ve started running again. I gifted some to my 93-year old mom for her lower back. I love not only that it works, it’s harvested thoughtfully, and that it’s a female founded company. I’ll link below to it and the discount code to try it yourself.
Fitness mistakes like this are the #1 reason for injury. I so understand the desire to get results yesterday’s yesterday, however it just won’t work out in the long term. You’ve got to have a foundation before you ramp up to more.
“Smart starts” lead to flipping fantastic finishes. Have you ever tried to read the last page or last chapter of a book without reading the middle? It’s not satisfying. It doesn’t have the impact or desired outcome on you. Neither will your fitness program.
Walking mistakes like this are the cause of overuse injuries like tendinitis most often in the IT Band, or bursitis of the hip, or plantar fasciitis.
Flip: Walk frequently but short periods to start. Add 2 or 3 minutes a week to your walk per week. So week one you walk 20 minutes, week two you walk 23 minutes. It may seem slow but in a month you go from 20 minutes to 32 minutes of walking, and that’s significant. Yet you’ve allowed your joints, ligaments, and muscles to adapt.
Walking mistakes like this one will prevent fat loss during menopause. That covers a lot of years since it’s not uncommon for women to experience perimenopause symptoms for a decade.
First of all it’s important to know, we should all be walking. It’s movement. But just walking has become necessary because we all sit so much. You need however to have some intense walking, some light walking, and some intermittent high and low intensity (interval) walking in your routine.
You’ve got three energy systems. So a single intensity all the time is going to ignore two. It’s not good to go all out all the time. It’s also not good to go super comfortable all the time.
The most common mistakes:
Have purpose to your workouts. Every single one of them. Even if you’re at your ideal weight and you “look fine and don’t need to lose weight,” your best aging happens when all systems are go. Think down the road.
Flip: Plan a long slow day, a short interval training day with at least 4 repeats of 30 seconds or a minute of fast or hill walking alternated with recovery, and a moderate intensity day in each week.
Walking is cardiovascular work that will have very little positive influence on your lean muscle mass. You lose muscle easier than you gain it after 50. To preserve it, and to gain any, you absolutely must strength train.
You’ll be decreasing your percent body fat by increasing your lean, and that ultimately will support a higher metabolism that then helps fat loss.
The real clarification you want to make is that fat loss, not weight loss, is your first and highest priority. You can lose weight, but if it’s muscle you are also losing metabolism and will gain fat.
Don’t go walking down that road after 50! (pun intended!)
Your posture and power in push off during walking will improve too so every step is more effective and efficient.
Similar to #1, you’ve got to have that foundation. Speed is known to cause more injury than resistance. So before you try something, anything really, fast, you want to have learned the proper way to do it slow.
The desire to use intervals when you walk, especially if you’ve been doing them elsewhere – say attending a spinning class or doing elliptical – may be strong. However every mode of exercise has it’s nuances and the body needs a chance to get used to it.
Even if you’re not breathless or feel as if you could do more your body has parts that need to adapt.
Flip: Return to #1 and review. Make sure you’ve been walking regularly for a few weeks before you ramp up interval training.
Sure, it’s just walking, but you want to begin it slowly. You may not need a static stretch before you start. However, if you have a history of ankle, knee, or hip issues I would definitely take a few minutes and stretch before you go.
By the way, ankle-related issues are an age-related problem. Don’t read that to say you’re bound to have them. But doing range of motion exercises, and warming up before doing more than daily activities of living, can help you maintain range of motion as you age.
Be sure to take 5 or 10 minutes to stretch at the end of a walk. Your muscles are warm and ripe for flexibility and mobility benefits of stretching. You can do a joint and muscle specific stretch or hit several muscle groups at once (for example, a warrior pose from yoga).
Now, how does that help weight loss? Warm ups and cool downs certainly aren’t “calorie burning” necessarily. But, hey, if you’re sidelined because you tried to take short cuts? You’re fitness suffers and so do your walks.
No idea how to do warm ups and cool downs or pull it all together? You might like this.
Walking mistakes like this are easy to fall into if you always walk from your house. Walking on the same terrain repeatedly can be a problem though. You’d notice it more if it were a sharp grade on the side of the road, but you may miss it when it’s just a rolling hill walk on what seems like a flat surface.
On a track for instance you may notice every other day runners are told to run clockwise or counter clockwise. That can be a problem for runners who go every other day! Not helpful!
It can still cause you to overuse the same muscles and joints if you do it often enough.
Flip: Change routes, go backwards, walk on the other side of the street (for safety you should walk toward oncoming traffic if you’re on the side of the road or walking a bike path).
If you’re only paying attention to calories you’re very likely going to go long all the time or go hard all the time or both. Which, in return will commit several of the mistakes above.
It’s important to know your hormone status, or start listening to clues so you understand it. Are you constantly stressed? Can’t get up in the morning? Then a short and slow walk may be the best thing for you. Not because it burns calories, but because it helps reduce cortisol.
Calories don’t control your weight (or fat): hormones do. So pay attention to hormones.
You can learn more about hormones, their signs and symptoms and what that means for exercise here.
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Most after dinner drinks are full of sugar, alcohol, or caffeine. This one subs as a dessert and you could use decaf coffee if that’s your jam. Mint and chocolate are powerful paired with protein. Try this whether you’re just off the slopes or sledding hill or you’re at your desk!
Blend the hot water with protein powder, cacao, and peppermint with a small immersion blender right in your mug. (or add to a blender). Blend until smooth.
Top with whipped cream and cacao nibs for a decadent treat.
Flip: Make it richer by heating unsweetened almond milk instead of water
This after dinner drink is like that favorite Girl Scout cookie in a mug. Only better for your body and missing the carbs and sugar. Unlike most after dinner drink favorites, there’s no alcohol (though I wouldn’t be surprised if you adventurous folks might try Peppermint Schnapps instead of extract!) and it’s kid-friendly too. It tastes and feels like a rich dessert without sending your blood sugar soaring and ready for a crash, or making sleep a restless matter.
After dinner a sweet treat like this can signal your brain that it’s “done.” So you don’t go looking for snacks before bed and you’re satisfied not disciplined. Plus it won’t fill you up in an uncomfortable way the way some desserts can do. There’s nothing here to trigger food sensitivities either, unlike most desserts.
Try it! Share it! And let me know how it goes!
You might also like these warm protein-rich drinks:
Lady, you’re an influence for everyone around you. Though there is an abundance of information out there about women’s hormone health and you know we cover it here, there’s less about men’s hormone health. So we’re diving into it in this episode.
I am so glad you’re joining me for this episode. It is really at your request that I have brought my guest on because so very often I’ve been asked, who is the guy’s version of Flipping 50?
This one no surprise if you’re paying attention to the title is about men’s hormone health. For your partner, your dad, sons, brothers or friend, you are most likely an influencer. I’m asked so very often, who’s the guy’s Flipping 50? Though he serves other ages, I want to give a warm welcome to my guest today.
Dr. Tracy Gapin is a board certified urologist, men’s health expert, speaker, and founder of Smart Men’s Health in Sarasota, Florida.
Through his precision performance medicine program, he provides men a personalized path to optimize not just their testosterone levels, but their overall health and vitality so they can be amazing husbands, fathers, and leaders.
He incorporates epigenetic coaching with data-driven biometric tracking, hormone optimization, peptide therapy, and cutting edge age management protocols to help men optimize their health and performance.
1 – What are men’s biggest health concerns? (or what should men’s hormone health concerns be?)
2 – If a listener is thinking, why has my man lost his edge and how do I handle it? What’s your answer?
3 – Let’s define epigenetics for listeners and how does it apply to men’s health?
4 – How do you work with men?
You can learn more about his program specifically for men’s hormone health – precision performance medicine.
Add collagen-rich protein to your morning pick-me-up. You don’t have to skip coffee, just do it better. Choose organic and clean coffee to start. Your skin, hair, nails, gut, and connective tissue love collagen, especially post-50 as estrogen drops. This way to use Paleo Power protein is a deliciously sneaky way to boost your collagen protein intake. Mocha coffee at home is super easy.
Prep your coffee. Blend the coffee with protein powder, cacao, and vanilla with a small immersion blender right in your mug until smooth. (Or add to a blender).
Flip: Add a dash of cinnamon
Flip: I use a coconut milk powder when I’m traveling as my coffee creamer
Mocha coffee could be flipped into a vanilla coffee too! Add a little real vanilla (no alcohol) extract instead of the raw cacao, and substitute Vanilla Paleo Power for the chocolate! Yum!
The benefit of adequate protein for metabolism, strength, stamina, and health is clear for all but never more important than for aging adults. Women notoriously get less protein than men. Though RDA’s and many apps may suggest you count grams by the day and have you consume based on body weight, research since 2008 suggests per meal is smarter. Your body can synthesize protein in specific amounts best. So yes, snack wisely, even have that mocha coffee wisely. But more so be sure you’ve got adequate protein at each of three meals. Read more about your protein needs for aging optimally here.
Many of the items on this quick fitness changes list come from Hot, Not Bothered: 99 Daily Flips for Slimmer, Fitter, Faster So You Can Master Metabolism Before, During, and (long) After Menopause. The book references include hundreds of cited studies featuring subjects who are in perimenopause, menopause, and post menopause.
Why is that important? Because when a subject in a study is a young athletic male, nothing about that study’s results may pertain to you. Yet, the media fail to point that out. You may easily be seduced by programs built based on research about people who are not you, not experiencing the same hormone fluctuations.
It does. The way you age depends on it. Twice weekly strength training for six months changes the expression of 179 genes associated with aging. The weight training must properly overload the muscle. It is the only way to avoid sarcopenia – loss of muscle that otherwise naturally occurs with age. To avoid frailty leading to falls, fractures, and dependent living, lift.
Need to get started exercising? If you’re starting or starting over, you may like this.
You’ll connect the dots between your fitness results and your sleep, your water intake, your digestion, your stress, your energy. You’ll be able to look back at this time last year and see how very far you’ve come. The 5 day or 30 day challenge you’re doing right now may be the start of a habit that changes your life for the better.
Reading empowers you. If you can’t read, listen to books, or have Alexa share books while you’re cooking. Books can inspire you, inform you, and educate you about how to start or keep going. A few of my favorite titles are here.(and just below)
If you’re not already integrating all seven fitness components to naturally balance hormones, this book will open up simple ways you can, even when you can’t exercise as much as you think you need to. In fact, the book may help you realize by not exercising as much as you would if you had time, you’re better off! You just need to drop the guilt trip you’re giving yourself. And, yes, this is a shameless plug. But I wrote it to help women, and it can’t do that if you don’t know about it.
It’s time to tune into your aging skin’s needs and embrace oils for your face. Yes, even if you’re still breaking out along with those crow’s feet, oil is a game-changer. Natural ingredients minus all of the toxic ingredients you’ll find too often in most beauty products is what you’ll find in new and better product lines. One of my favorites is Annmarie skincare. How is this related to fitness? If you start sweating or getting into the elements it matters what you’re putting on your skin. You’re going to glow from positive fitness changes, so let it shine, girl!
In about two minutes you can have a high protein, high antioxidant meal full of vegetables, and fiber that will keep you full for hours. It costs you less than most meals would, about the same price as that latte you buy. More importantly the cost of not eating a high protein fiber-rich breakfast is that you’ll succumb to cravings for caffeine and sugar the rest of the day. You will accelerate the fitness changes you want to see when you become a smoothie girl. Just be selective. This is not the smoothie stand at the mall full of sugar and fruit only or protein powders in a can full of chemicals.
Need a get-started recipe guide for smoothies? Try this.
Save your back. The discs in your back plump overnight as you’re sleeping horizontal such that when you wake the intervertebral pressure puts you at risk for rupture. Both movement and moment pressure can cause a rupture. That is, something like actually going for a run or lifting weights, and something like doing a plank or pushing a shovel to clear the driveway can cause a ruptured disc. After 60 minutes about 90% of that extra pressure dissipates so you’re much safer to exercise. If that’s news to you, this might be interesting for you.
Collect at least half a dozen simple recipes you can make that you can grab ingredients for even without a list. Exercise will not make up for poor nutrition. Exercise is Medicine. Food is medicine. You wouldn’t undergo chemo while you’re smoking, right? Stop the processed fast food options that sabotage you.
Go somewhere you can explore all day without it feeling like exercise. Spend time wondering around exploring. Whether you’d love to tour a foreign city, walk miles of beach and snorkel, or browse all the best museums in New York, you’ll be on an active adventure at your own pace. Sure, you can take someone along but imagine it by yourself without a schedule or agenda. Fitness changes when you’re away. It feels less like a chore, or something you don’t have time for, and something naturally you want to do when the day is wide open and you’re just exploring. Plan an active vacation or retreat (if even for yourself) and you’ll amplify that!
It’s not the total at the end of the day that matters. Your body best absorbs the essential amino acids (EAA) from about 30 grams of high quality protein at once. So shoot for at least two if not three high quality protein meals to sustain your muscle. EAA are the building blocks of muscle. If you’re not seeing tone or your skin is lacking luster these days, check in with your protein intake.
Even if your smoothie is post workout and not breakfast or you just can’t imagine a cold breakfast, make it high protein. Leftovers will do. Just nix the carbs and make this about protein and tons of veggies. It’s fine to start the day with a salad if you’re inclined. Fitness changes don’t happen by accident after 50 and being on purpose includes nutrition. It was always important, now it’s much more so.
It doesn’t work for everyone. You can try it to know when you have the most energy to put effort into your exercise. Fasted may be best for you and it may not. Don’t listen to what works for anyone else. Regardless of whether you eat before exercise or not, you do want that high quality protein breakfast. You’re helping your hormones balance you for better mood, blood sugar all day long by doing so.
Old school said create a caloric deficit by exercising and eating less. We learned that slows your metabolism and confuses your body making it store more fat. Then school said eat within 30 minutes of your workout and have carbs and protein. Chocolate milk was the bomb. But we realized the sugar and dairy or soy in chocolate milk was spoiling results and contributing to inflammation.
For older adults there’s a small blunting effect on ability to synthesize protein (your muscles don’t benefit as much) for about an hour after a workout. Resistance training does open up the muscles for better protein synthesis though, so after that hour is a perfect time to consume a high protein meal. That makes early morning or mid morning ideal times to get a hard workout in.
Talk about your health habits and what you do for fitness. The more you surround yourself with people who do what you do or want to do the easier you make it to have a healthier life. Those bonds you share with people who grew up with you are unique and they go deep.
It doesn’t matter if they’re next door, across the country, or only online today. You can still get connected. Sometimes you outgrow old friends. Sometimes your dear old friends just aren’t into fitness changes you want to make. All okay. It makes you more interesting to each other. I interviewed friend and 74-year old Dexter Yeats who is an Ironman athlete (she competed in several in 2019 – this is not past tense!) and asked what it’s like getting together with friends at home – who don’t train.
She still enjoys them and they her. They still have plenty in common. But she’s got a whole other set of friends of all ages who participate in endurance events too. Expand your circles.
Maintaining mobility in the coming decades will depend on you staying active. Regularly putting your joints through full range of motion now is insurance.
Get off the grid and the sidewalk and find a path. Surround yourself regularly with nature and you’ll reap far more than just the physical rewards. The reduction in cortisol from stints in nature is documented and called ‘forest bathing.” Leave your cell phone and get unplugged.
Do it as a reward. Do it as a way to feel better moving so you want to get started. If you’re struggling to exercise because it simply doesn’t feel good, consider starting with a weekly massage. Do that for a month. The better you feel the less frequently you’ll “need” the massage and the more movement will help you stay tuned up. You can also optimize fitness changes by releasing tension in muscles that you don’t even realize you’ve got it in.
Self-massage, or myofascial massage, helps you stretch more effectively by smoothing out the fibrous overlay on top of your muscles. The difference between fascia and muscle can be described like this. If you’re feeling “tight” but you haven’t lost range of motion, you probably need to use a foam roller or The Stick.
If you’ve lost range of motion the muscles may need a good stretch. Yet, they may benefit more when you’ve had that fascia smoothed out. Myofascial release can also help hydrate those fibers and smooth them out which will reduce the appearance of cellulite.
If you’re used to being in the race, volunteer. Give back from the other side of the bib number. If you’re not ready to do a race yet, volunteer. It may change your mind. Either way you’ll be inspired and be contributing in a very worthwhile way for those who are getting out of their comfort zone and appreciate you. If you want to see up close and personal how fitness changes people, this is it.
The more micronutrients you get in the less you experience cravings. Your skin, bones, and muscles all require a micronutrient-dense diet. You’ve never felt better than when you begin to consume 6-9 cups of vegetables on a daily basis. Fitness changes will begin to happen that couldn’t without the right nutrients.
Even if hiking isn’t your thing, try moving your weights to the deck. Ride your bicycle or swim in an outdoor pool. Most adults spend a considerable amount of time indoors breathing in stale air and surrounded by chemicals in carpet, upholstery. Any time you can get a little more fresh air, do it.
It’s a slow moving exercise in balance that will challenge your feet and stabilizers. It’s also tranquil and engaging. You’ve got to be in the present moment.
A charity, a trip, a stretch doing something you’ve never done. There are events all over for walking, running, biking, and group fitness classes. Just keep your eyes open or type into a search engine and you’ll find something. I might never have done my first marathon had it not been for Team in Training by the Leukemia and Lymphoma society. The second time I fundraised for them I coached a group. It’s a game changer for both you and those you raise funds for.
Alone or with your partner. It’s as good for the posture and cardio as it is for the brain. Learning something new, reacting to a partner or calls (square-dancing) and exercising to music are all good for health and fitness.
Put on the wraps, the gloves, find a place with a bag or just do it with the additional weight of the gloves (about 12 oz). You can learn at any age. And if fitness changes for you such that low impact is important, you can create high intensity work with boxing without the jarring.
For a low impact, muscle and joint-loving exercise, it’s hard to beat swimming. And if not swimming, because potentially your shoulders don’t allow it, water exercise is a wonderful way to get full range of motion when otherwise you can’t. If you’re one who loves a lot of exercise, doing this type of recovery movement can keep you from sabotaging yourself.
Some exercise is recovery and some exercise requires recovery.
That’s really just shortening the eating window. For most people food has become an all day event. Grazing or small meals frequently means your body never needs to burn fat. Start with 3 meals, no snacks, and a long overnight fast between dinner and breakfast. Don’t skip breakfast as some intermittent fasting programs recommend. For women in midlife specifically eating early is key to optimal hormone health.
Alternatively you can do a fasting-mimicking diet that allows you to eat regular meals just less and it’s scientifically designed with specific amounts of plant protein, fat, and carbohydrates to trick your body into thinking it’s fasting.
Use the results to power your exercise and your nutrition. Talk with your family members about it. Fitness changes you might not otherwise would have considered can be revealed to you from your DNA test. Though we all need strength training to hold onto muscle as we age, you (like me) may be genetically predisposed to endurance exercise. That would mean you can and should do a greater percent of your exercise at lower intensity for longer period of time. Several of my private clients have found just this to be the case.
The brain benefits are well documented. For women in midlife the calm and focus from meditation will counter the brain fog, and loss of memory, that are common complaints. If you feel like you’ve got monkey mind and just can’t focus, anyone can learn to do it. Just five minutes a day can be of benefit.
You don’t have to spend $90 on a pair of yoga pants, but if you can, it might be a motivator to you. There is a difference. Whatever the cost, you should love the way they make you feel. If it’s been a while and you’re still wearing something from 10 years ago, invest. There’s more support, control, and comfort cooling or warming you in fit fashions today. No more waiting until some day.
At a recent media appearance I shared why “weight loss” is the worst New Year’s resolution! If you right how lose weight and a large percent of it is muscle, you are slowing your metabolism. After 50 that’s harder to turn around. You want to be monitoring your fat loss, not just your weight.
Give yourself the extra half size or the wider toe box. You may order online for convenience but get fitted in a store by someone who knows feet and shoes both first. So many women find they’ve got Morton’s neuroma, plantar fasciitis, or Achilles tendinitis in midlife. It is related to hormone changes but careful selection of your footwear and your exercise programming can reduce your risk.
Just as your fitness changes, so too do your feet! What were higher arches may no longer be. What was enough cushion may not be as you lose fat (right? why there?) in the pads of your feet.
If you have any feelings that your workouts are just not getting you the results they should be, check your sleep habits. Too little sleep can sabotage several hormones that you need on track for optimal fitness, especially now. Optimal cortisol levels, testosterone, and growth hormone production depend on sleep. They in turn affect other hormones. So just as important as how many and how much weight you lift is how much sleep you get to allow the repair of those muscles.
If it all too easily spirals into not just a cup or two but a pot in the morning and an afternoon coffee shop habit, there’s a good chance you’re cortisol levels are off. If those coffees are a substitute for nourishing food or water, it’s time to get control. Decide what goes and stays. Right before a workout might be a perfect time to have that coffee.
A little caffeine before a workout is an ergogenic boost. That is, it can make you work a little harder without feeling you are, and can boost fat metabolism. You can get that kick from coffee or from matcha, powdered green tea leaves. Matcha in fact has been shown to increase fat burning after interval training by 29%. To get the boost you want matcha in your blood stream when you exercise so have a cup about an hour before or add it to a “simple shake.” (below) You don’t want a high fiber or fat shake before a workout. Save that for after.
Blend. The protein before a workout boosts muscle building benefits of the workout even before you begin. The matcha boosts the fat burning benefits. Win win!
But if you do drink coffee, you might love this.
Surprised? Just don’t over do it. Daily is overdoing it. Wine, after all is sugar. Enjoy a glass with dinner instead of before dinner when the sugar is much more quickly metabolized on an empty stomach. That can increase the likelihood what you eat after is stored as fat. Just watch out for the habit of starting with coffee and ending with wine.
Ideally, you have energy to start your day and can relax at the end of the day without the outside support. In other words coffee and wine shouldn’t be a crutch. But, there is some proof that moderate drinkers are less likely to get osteoporosis than non-drinkers.
The collaborative nature of women is amplified in later life. Women are most likely to seek each other and provide support. We “get” each other. And we’re less judgmental about exactly what you do and more supportive of you finding the right thing for you. Fitness changes are harder to navigate alone and a group can make it easier to stay accountable.
Wear it walking the dog. Wear it doing squats or lungs at home. Wear it cooking dinner. Loading the spine is good for bone density. It will happen as you’re doing rowing exercise and chest press lifting weights, too. Be careful putting on a weighted vest if you have shoulder issues, that can be tricky.
What you do for optimal fitness changes. What you can do changes too. If you can’t lift heavy, or you’re nervous about it, this is exciting news right now. It’s not new, so if new makes you nervous, relax. It just took an incredibly long time to get this research originated in Japan out here to those of us who stand to benefit the most. Link here to a longer blog about this. If you want and need to lift lighter, even if you can’t exercise right now, blood flow restriction bands can be a useful tool.
Is there a standing balance pose or an inversion you can’t do? Make it your goal. The focus and concentration on one small goal from a consistent focus will give you a sense of accomplishment. Energy management and enhanced mental focus from a yoga practice support every area of your life.
Get a thorough assessment of your diet, your current exercise program, your goals, and daily habits. If you’re still exercising the way you did a decade ago or if what you’re doing isn’t working, it’s time for a review. Sit down whether virtually or face-to-face with someone who is an expert in working with women like you. You should come away with confidence you’ve got fitness changes for a better plan, or know what tests would be helpful for you to have, and what nutritional changes you want to consider, along with the lifestyle habits that will help you feel best now and later.
Fast twitch muscle fibers are lost twice as fast as you age. Of all the fitness changes you make, this one should be at the forefront in every workout. It takes minutes to activate fast twitch fibers but it needs to be done consistently. They’re responsible for your metabolism and your reaction skills. It just takes a few minutes a day to work on them either through quick agility moves or strength training. Here’s more about how.
Is your energy level low? It’s best to test, rather than guess with supplements. Low Vitamin D levels could be contributing to your of lack energy. You also need Vitamin D to support lean muscle mass, which is already harder to keep or gain when you’re older. Testing micronutrients can tell you where you stand with a number of nutrients that will have an influence on your fitness, health, and metabolism. Use code flipping50 for a discount on your
Helpful? Share it with a friend. Bookmark it to come back to later. You don’t have to do them all at once! Just begin. One thing! What is your first one thing?
In full disclosure, if you make a purchase from any of the affiliate links included on this post I will make a small commission from the sale of certain items but the price is the same to you. I only share with you items I use and love myself.
Until you lose your health, do you really truly value it and nurture it? Try this little exercise:
Can you imagine nearly losing it all? What do you think of when I ask that? Did you think of money or you think of health?
Imagine you’ve got these three main components of your life divided:
You had to give one up?
Then the next day you had to give me one more which would it be?
After nearly losing her life in 2013 and spending almost half a million dollars to get it back, Krisstina Wise is changing the world again by inspiring others to build extraordinary wealth and optimal health.
By sharing her extreme successes and abysmal failures, Krisstina reveals the elusive secrets of the uber wealthy (and why health is where to invest first). Through cutting-edge, research-based education, access to the world’s top wealth strategists and doctors, Krisstina is helping millions each year discover the true path to wealth, health, and happiness.
You can find Krisstina on her WealthyWellthy Life podcast, her free weekly Millionaire Masterclass, and on her website at WealthyWellthy.Life.
“My body is my number one asset.”
Use Flipping50 for a special podcast listener discount
Blend the hot water with protein powder, cacao, and vanilla with a small immersion blender right in your mug until smooth. (Flip: add to a blender).
Cold smoothies not doing it for you in cooler months? Let’s face it even the most devout smoothie lover can shiver when it’s brrrr outside. Still, you don’t want to skip the protein if you seek smooth skin and muscle tone. Try this delicious warm chocolate option.
You can power up your day with protein and totally skip the sugar (or chemicals) you’ll find in most hot chocolate options. The protein, collagen protein, and antioxidants give you a guilt-free pleasure your skin and mood will love.
Make no mistake, collagen protein alone won’t serve your muscles. Nor will amino acid-rich protein provide collagen. You want both. You want Paleo Power. You don’t have to be doing a “paleo diet” to enjoy it. It’s just a clean animal protein for those of us that know we feel more energy and see better body composition results from it. Don’t get me wrong, I love Plant Power too, but I’ve found my energy and muscle require animal protein. Test for yourself. It’s the best way to know.
P.S. in case you are a plant lover, unfortunately due to the nature of the texture of plant-based protein powders this won’t work well with your plant-based option. You’ll wind up with “silt” on the bottom of your cup instead of a creamy dissolved hot chocolate goodness.
Hot chocolate just got an upgrade! Craving killer, morning protein start, off the slopes or done with shoveling… this is a great guiltless warm up!
Lab tests can inform a coach or personal trainer how to adjust your exercise program optimally and dial in your personal best program. How should you test? Which tests matter? What should you share? I’m addressing it here and now at the beginning of a New Year (and decade) for good reason. As a middle-aged woman, this matters so much!
From heart rate to movement assessments, personal training has tried to moved into more uniquely assessing an individual. Then the task was matching the results with a training program to optimize health or fitness. But what happens when there are hormone fluctuations and changes in gut health that change a woman’s status?
That’s where lab tests come in. Here are the ones I love and use personally, and share with my clients when we’ve done the foundation work and still want to see more results or find a missing puzzle piece.
Cortisol is particularly important. You want to know what’s happening to estrogen (all types), testosterone, progesterone, DHEA, and several others too. It’s really good to check thyroid – but certain thyroid tests matter more. You want to know your thyroid antibodies. When you test can be so very important. If you’ve worked with a health coach and you’ve made the appropriate changes but its not working then test.
If for instance you have made all the changes …
(You really don’t want to skip ahead to lab tests first if you haven’t made the changes you’re responsible first. The exception to the rule? You won’t. You refuse to make the lifestyle changes recommended to you. You won’t prioritize sleep, or reduce the coffee, or increase the veggies, or try an elimination and reintroduction diet, or lift weights and eliminate endurance exercise.
If that’s you, then a test may help. Seeing the test results can help you be more compliant. I get it. Some of us have to have a hard number, and pay for it, even when we have the physical evidence what we’re doing is not working).
… and you’re still not seeing results after consistently applying changes, then testing would be what I’d recommend for you. Always give thought to what you’re going to do with the results. You’ll be back to the need to take action. A pill or cream, or deciding to try alternative therapy, still don’t work if you don’t apply the very basic exercise, nutrition, and lifestyle (sleep, stress, rest) changes that are up to you.
You can see two of my favorite panels here. One is a quickie put together for active Flipping 50 community members and one is a more extensive look at you and what’s happening right now. https://yourlabwork.com/flipping-50/
And I also like the Dutch test periodically (this is the 3rd of my favorites) for looking at hormones. I’m going to open the kimono for real soon and share the review of my own labs with a friend and doctor. Together we’re putting the program together that is key to losing those 10-lbs of perfect storm. (Stay tuned to this in early 2020)
Side note: Disclosure – this is humorous that I’m spending so much time with clients looking at labs, coaching them on the changes they make after labs, and relying on labs when clients are stuck. Because literally going into grad school after having been an exercise physiology/exercise science undergrad I said, “I don’t want to be a lab rat.”
That in reference to all of my classmates who were doing muscle biopsies and standing beside the VO2 max testing cart for hours a day during their grad work. I went the other way and though I had to do my share of testing as a graduate assistant, I studied exercise psychology because I knew we weren’t getting the habit change to stick with enough people. So, it is definitely full circle that labs now have become the way to discover root cause- or root of motivation for change- when all else fails.
Test, don’t guess.
I offer myself up as exhibit A. After a year that began (Dec 23, 2018) with mold exposure for 6 months, followed by several major stressors that then included a sudden move and loss of business and 1/3 of my household items, along with other stressors both good and bad, and Ironman triathlon (Nov 24, 2019) training, my body was pushing back hard. I’d gained 9 lbs. So even with awareness of all I needed to do personally, I was still holding weight.
And no, bless you for thinking it but it’s not muscle.
(Psst.. during long endurance training it’s more typical to lose muscle than gain it – it’s not ideal for older adults to only endurance train! You’ve got to work the weights hard to offset those losses).
Even after a month of recovery (Dec 29, 2019), minimal and easy exercise, and lots of detox methods and green smoothies, there’s been minimal change in the weight. Those habits usually work in days for me to literally see and feel change.
So it’s time to test. Because though vanity plays a part- doesn’t it always? It’s about a mysterious 9 lbs that can’t be explained. No significant change in habits changed that would have contributed. If anything common sense would tell you weight loss would have been more likely.
I like to test omega 3, magnesium, Vitamin D, and B vitamins, and ferritin levels. They’re so related to inflammation (Omega 3) and energy (Vitamin D, B vitamins, and Iron) and metabolism (magnesium). The sooner you know levels have changed the sooner you can alter (up or down) supplements you may be taking to optimize them.
I know you would be interested in calcium but calcium in your blood does not indicate what is in your bones. In fact it can give you a false sense of security when in fact your blood is “stealing” from your bones. The best determinant of whether the amount of calcium in your diet is being absorbed is a bone density scan.
If your homocysteine or A1C levels are elevated (and omega 3 levels are low) inflammation may be suggesting a change is necessary to see greater results from your exercise. The change you need may be less exercise.
Think of it like having acne. All the things you try or your teens do/did that normally might be good are going to be bad because your skin is already saying “enough!”
So, really cutting back on exercise, and adding relaxation, along with other inflammation-reducing therapies can help you regain your equilibrium so you can get positive results again from fitness.
If your CRP levels come back high in a recent blood test that can indicate some micronutrient insufficiencies and you can confirm them if you’ve recently tested.
If you have great insurance use it! If you like me like to take control, rarely see a doctor, and don’t have one who would order the type of test you want as often as you like to know you may want to order your own. I check micronutrient status frequently once or twice a year. I’ll test hormones more regularly too if I feel it’s changing or I’ve changed my status.
If you want to do your own self-directed labs you can look here at yourlabwork.com/flipping-50 for my source of labs.
You can use flipping50now for $200 off either of the Transformation Panel or Elite Athlete packages most often used by my clients.
Or choose your own options and use Flipping50 for $20 off.
1) Order your labs (see the codes above to save) My favorites again: Elite Panel, Transformation Panel, or the Dutch (specifically for sex hormones and cortisol)
2) Once the lab order arrives, test your hormones at a local lab (or with the kit for Dutch)
3) Request a session with me by sending your labs and asking for a session at firstname.lastname@example.org Have a 30-minute consultation with Debra to review a) your lab results, b) current exercise program, 3) and a simple self-assessment that provides you with:
*it’s not my scope or role to diagnose nor to treat. I provide you with questions and information so you can consider the options available to you.
Your labs are back within about a week –it’s not long at all so you can get some advice and start creating a plan for a New Year and decade!
Your lab tests results are something that change over time and when you’re fluctuating or applying a new program testing more frequently (I’ll do every 6 months for micronutrients or for hormones pre and post a new plan). Your DNA though, can also give you insight into best training methods for YOU, best ways to eat, your own challenges that you haven’t been able to figure out may suddenly have an explanation. DNA is not going to change.
Yet, you can change the expression of your DNA by changing your habits. Fitness can get easier and optimal weight can too if you’re eating for your genetics instead of the most popular diet at the time.
I for instance tested last June. However, a lot has changed for me since then (a move, a heavy training schedule, several stressors, and my weight change for no other apparent reason), so just a little over 6 months later I know I need a more accurate snapshot. I won’t always test that frequently but it’s likely I will again in 6 months after implementing a plan of attack when I get results.
The integration of your hormones, micronutrients, and your DNA can give you a powerful plan for determining your best fitness strategies. There is no one-size-fits-all approach. Your fitness and nutrition we now know are as unique as your thumbprint – as your DNA.
It’s interesting that we’ve adopted heart rate training, counting our steps, minutes, miles, reps and yet you may not even know what the target should be. Someone says 10,000 steps is good. Someone says that 3-5 days of cardio for 20-60 minutes is good. But the science of those recommendations, guidelines, and position statements is based on a large pool of people who are nothing like you.
I’m more and more frequently asked after a post like this if I can do a single session to set up a program for someone. I’ve been coaching women in midlife for 36 years now, and I know that behavior change takes time. I also have a limited amount of time to spare. So working with clients long term is why you’ll find I offer 90 day coaching. If you prefer to have a one-time session and follow through on your own I have a special rate for early January 2020. It’s by invitation only because my time is limited. First come first serve!
If you order labs or DNA through the links here the complimentary consultation is 30 minutes. If you’d prefer a more comprehensive session or if you have labs or DNA testing elsewhere and would like to review with Debra for:
Request an invitation. Send specific details about whether you have recent labs already, you are ordering them via links here, and what you most need help with. We’ll send you a link for Results Review coaching if there are still spots available.
The single 45-minute session is $295. You’ll get strategies for moving forward on your own or the option to apply the consultation fee to 90-Day VIP coaching.
You may also like:
Coming Soon: DNA testing
Are you starting over after 50? Whether you choose it or it chooses you, starting over can be the best thing that ever happened. This episode is all about unwelcome changes followed by an exciting ride still unfolding for guest Lisa Hoffman.
Lisa answered a call to help demonstrate exercises on a news station in Washington, D.C. That’s how we met. I wanted to share her story with you. If you’re in a tough spot, and changes are happening to you that you didn’t plan for, this is for you.
Lisa Hoffmann is a divorced 47-year-old Washington, DC native. Former Real Estate Title Insurance Accountant turned Model, Actress and Writer. Some of her projects include, Devils Deal and Drifters both independent short films she co-wrote and produced, released in 2017, Television print and video promotional appearances.
She’s been acting in several indie films all shot in the DC area as well as a few television miniseries that will be released sometime in 2020. Spokesperson for big names like Fitbit as well as working on her book called “Fly Birdie Fly” release date to be determined.
What was it like starting over midlife? We talk about it all.
23:24- 25:05 CBD for Life
Use code: Flipping50 and save 20%!
Are YOU starting over with exercise? This is for you!
Have you ever set a New Year’s Resolution? Or set a weight or a performance goal? Setting goals is a process. If you’ve ever been inspired to or forced to (I taught a health studies course for years, so that is for my students) … and if you’ve ever wondered, why you didn’t follow through or why you quit… then this episode is for you.
If you’re listening at the start of the New Year when I created this episode and setting goals for a new year that’s healthier, lighter, fitter, happier, more prosperous, or full of love you’re going to find this fascinating. Whether you’re just about to set goals or you’ve already set goals my hope for you is that setting goals is easier, effortless, and that they work for you better after this.
As I release this episode STRONGER I my 12 week program is launching. In every program I like to think that I’ve helped reduce some of the questions about goals make sense when it comes to the how do I do it? For instance if you want to be more toned, loss some of the belly fat specifically, or just overall weight, or you want to sleep better – all things that the right hormone balancing exercise plan can provide, how much and how often do you do? I take care of that. So if you know what you want and you’re still in search of the how to do it, I’ve got you covered. But you’ve only got a few days literally so register right now. If you’re coming later, the doors open a few times a year, and you can be the first to know when it opens again.
I’ve studied the science of behavior change for over 30 years. Including the stages of change, the so-called S.M.A.R.T. goals, and look back at all the goal setting my clients, university students, and the fitness instructors and trainers I’ve worked with in over 35 years and include my own personal experience having gone from someone who hated running in high school to someone who majored in exercise sciences and has completed many marathons and Ironman triathlons
Did you know that SMART goals originated in 1981 in an article by George T. Doran in Management Review.
This is one of those things that should inspire you to do anything that might be on your goal list. If he can do it so can you. The question is… is there any scientific proof that a SMART goal actually works? When was it adopted by health and fitness?
Indeed, teaching goal setting has become a staple of coaches and trainers and health educators. Yet, goal attaining isn’t actually any research showing SMART goals are more successful.
Despite decades of use there is little or no scientific data that the SMART goal formula either increases goal-setting behavior or produces better results than goal setting without using the SMART formula.
I’d been teaching SMART goals for a decade and a half – in fact as part of curriculum at Iowa State University and I began about 20 years ago to include my observation and opinion that SMART goals alone were dumb.
The SMART stand for Specific Measureable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time.
So let me break those each down a little.
S for specific I would definitely agree with.
If you want to be in better shape or exercise more those goals are pretty illusive.
To make them more specific you would define what better shape is for you. Do you want to be faster, stronger, have a better body composition (less fat, more muscle)?
If its exercise more, then consider your habits in the recent past? Say, instead of averaging your 2 times a week exercise sessions, your goal is to exercise 5 days a week. Now you’ve nailed a specific goal.
But I also gave you two different type of examples. Better shape is an outcome goal, and exercise more is an action goal. Which one do you think is easier to control? You can set both, but I encourage you to definitely set your action goals.
M stands for measureable. And we just did that too for exercise more. But for better shape you have to choose if it’s that you want better body composition then you’d measure your percent body fat and body muscle right now. (which by the way I recommend all of our program participants do – STRONGER I participants have to do it to access their videos!)
A traditionally stands for attainable, within a time frame. So you wouldn’t want to say go to the gym every single day this year. Never eat sugar this year.
The other A that I often used is the actions. So rather than the outcome goals of improving body composition (less fat, more muscle) the actions are:
Lift weights 2x a week for major muscles
Do more interval training and less endurance exercise
Include high quality protein at 3 meals a day
R originally was realistic. But that one I challenge. How excited are you about a realistic goal?
Should You Set Realistic or Exciting Goals?
Should you only reach for examples of what you’ve seen before? Then who would ever have broken the record for running a faster mile or built an airplane or become a president of color?
R can and should be relevant. I think that’s obvious but if it isn’t something you want and it’s relevant to you, why bother right? But when it was a business goal or you’re setting for a team like I do for personal training departments or solo trainers, this is definitely important.
T stands for time. In this case, even if it’s a year when you’re going to measure again, I’d suggest you set monthly goals to measure your body composition and weekly to measure your action goals.
That’s a quick description of setting goals and how you’d fit them under SMART. Hopefully, that helps you understand how to focus on those goals you might be setting.
Before I dive into the second half of this episode, I want to thank CBD for Life for sponsoring this episode. If you’ve ever experienced a little soreness after a workout, you know you’ve got a little inflammation going on. After taking a full month off of anything but recovery workouts since my triathlon when I started back I definitely got sore. CBD for Life rubs have been amazing to get my hips and glutes feeling more comfortable. I even gifted some to my 93-year old mom for her lower back. I care about what’s in the products I put on and love that there are none of the toxins in their products – only the body rebalancing things I do want. I’ll link to CBD for Life in the show notes and add the special Flipping50 link where listeners can try it for less. The lavender rub is my favorite.
Since we know that there’s no data proving that using SMART goals is better than any other method, make sure that if you use it, it works for you!
The best thing the acronym SMART has going for it is that it’s memorable. SMART. We all know it.
But the system itself should show you anything is possible. This was born out of an article… a system or method born out of the mind of a man with an idea. A perfect example of an exciting perspective not a realistic one.
There are several things missing from SMART goals. The first thing missing is emotion. SMART goals are logical. Fitness and health goals are usually emotional when they’re followed through on.
There should be urgency.
You want it and you don’t want to wait. You are not motivated you are committed. Sharing goals and getting support for those goals is crucial.
There are components of goal setting that you must consider related to whether we’re talking about getting there vs. the trip there. Are you setting goals based on the end result you want or are you setting the actions to get there?
I suggest that you first set a powerful end transformation. Do it without your logical brain or the little voice in your head interrupting you telling you:
So stifle those thoughts for now. You’re only dreaming about what would be so amazing you woke up in the morning loving the life you live and the skin you’re in. Turn off your logical brain for a few minutes.
Make sure you’ve not left these 3 things out. Sure writing down your goals is a part of making them more effective. But that’s still a logical simple task. How you write them down and what you’re thinking will make those goals far more likely to be goals you will follow through on.
Watch videos of athletes or others doing expertly what it is you want to do. Collect images of those you want to emulate. You have to see it done perfectly before you can do it perfectly.
Mental rehearsal was something I learned about in the 80’s. It was used by athletes and employed by sports psychologists. One of my favorites was William P. Morgan of the University of Wisconsin. He was the first to connect the antidepressant effects of exercise and sport, which was the start of associating mental health and exercise.
It was used by athletes who traveled long distances to competition without days ahead of the actual competition to practice once they arrived. It was used by athletes who were injured. There was no difference between those tennis athletes who mentally rehearsed a perfect serve or golfers who mentally rehearsed the perfect chip than those who physically did it.
I want to point out here that no great athlete or business person focuses on what they don’t want. They don’t focus on missing the shot, or even avoiding the pond or sand trap, or on losing the sale. They focus on the ball landing perfectly in the exact spot they want it then rolling to a stop in the exact spot the hole is in. They focus on making the sale or a better sale.
Think about anyone who is good at something. It can be anything… cooking, baking, decorating, drawing, running, basketball. Who comes to mind for you?
I can easily think about the golfers in my life. My step dad and my son both are such perfect examples of this. Not only did they spend time practicing the sport. When they weren’t they were reading Golf Digest, watching golf’s greats on TV, and consuming everything golf that they could. They thought about themselves as golfers.
My 15-year old began to wear collared shirts more than t-shirts. Any sport that can get a high school boy to comfortably wear a pink shirt was OK with me. He became a golfer.
So there are three common denominators I walk both my private clients and group programs through. Here they are if you want to crush your 2020 goal setting and goal getting. From seeing the vision…
There must be emotion in the goals and the transformation you want. This is the second step but it’s the absolute most important part of what it is you will do.
One of the biggest challenges the SMART goals have in health and fitness is that they’re void of emotion. The process is logical. That can work for a business – so long as the employees are emotional about what they need to do and why – but it’s not very helpful in fitness.
The success of mental rehearsal involved feeling in your body. You needed not just to see a picture in your mind of someone or yourself swinging a golf club perfectly. You needed to feel the club in your hand and the texture of the grip as you laid your left hand and right hand together to align the perfect grip. You felt the club in the air just above the ground.
If you can create strong feelings inside your body when you think about what it is you really want you can trick your brain. If you repeat the experience of those feelings and imagine what it is you want so clearly, frequently your brain will begin to respond as if it’s reality.
When that happens the brain sends signals to your cells and physically begins to make that come true.
It’s proven in what’s widely known now as the placebo effect. You can get results based on the belief what you’re doing will get results. Now, those actions have to be in alignment and can’t be counter to your goal for best results.
Act like the transformation has happened. Act and talk “as if.” Behave as if. You, in fact, become someone who has habits of the person you want to become.
If you’re listening and you’ve had a goal, a repeating goal for quite some time, the problem isn’t what you might think. The problem isn’t motivation or discipline. It is most likely that it doesn’t excite you.
If you want to lose weight and then you think life will be great there’s probably more emotion tied to the frustration of weight gain than there is to the joy of being at your optimal weight. You may need to ask, what do you really want to change? How is this really going to change your life?
You may also have some negative feelings around wanting that weight loss. If you see it as a vanity thing and that goes against your first nature being to serve others and get things done it’s not congruent enough with who you are.
So shifting a weight loss goal to… I want to be more intimate with my partner and more confident initiating intimacy and getting that part of our life back on track.
I want to have more energy and focus to accomplish the career goals I have and still have time for myself instead of being exhausted. I want to plan trips and adventures over the weekends instead of recovering from work.
Then you have to do a check in with whether you’re focused on the negatives of what you don’t want or the positive feelings of what you do.
One woman was so focused on weight she wants to lose its all she thought about. She thinks about the negative emotions related to the weight she doesn’t like. She thinks about what she’s doing wrong. She thinks about what else she can try.
She’s got only negative emotion about what she doesn’t want.
Based on the process of feeling the transformation so strongly the “as if” part is what makes your brain interpret this as your new reality. It goes about figuring out how to make it happen.
So yes, you still need to pick up the weights and get breathless doing those intervals. You’ll just be creating something bigger that lasts longer than a 20-minute workout.
And if you string together more meaningful workouts you’ll find setting goals far more effective. It’s not just a process you go through at the beginning of a year, or week, or quarter.
It really helps!
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