Fit at all ages

Your fitness requirements keep changing with age

What fitness regimen worked when you were 20 years old will not help your growing girth in the 40s. Even if you have maintained a strict lifestyle and have followed a regular workout programme, the changes in your body, brought on by age and the environment, will require you to adapt and alter your workouts to complement the added years.

Here is a quick guide to take you through the ages with exercise routines that are most suitable for you:

In your 20s…

As one fitness guru pointed out, there are very few tasks that you cannot do in your 20s – except, probably, gymnastics if you haven’t initiated it earlier. You could partake in any sports activities or undertake extreme workouts, provided you are in a healthy frame of mind and body. 20s is the perfect time to begin your fitness lifestyle with some strength-training routine; it should, generally, include lifting weights or doing exercises that train your body weight for resistance. Incorporate cardio workouts in between the strength-training routines.

In your 30s…

Although 30s is as good as the 20s for most exercise routines, research has found that, often, things – on the health and fitness side – become crucial at the age of 36. A survey in England found that, on average, age 36 is the year men become aware of their mortality and initiate a healthier lifestyle. This, say researchers, is brought on, usually, by the crying need to change the lifestyle of bingeing in the teens and 20s owing to the toll such lifestyle is taking on one’s body. A note of caution though, if you have relied on your genes and youth to keep your body in shape without any workout, have a word with your doctor before you begin, or follow a gradual routine. Initiate an all-rounded exercise programme to target different parts of the body. You need to loosen the stiff muscles with some balance and flexibility exercises, or even yoga.

In your 40s…

If you are already here, you would certainly be aware that your body is not what it used to be a few years ago (or perhaps it is, if you have followed a dedicated fitness routine). However, you need to press the caution button as your body might not be able to cope with the wear and tear that comes with some activities. Belly fat might pile on without invitation and the drop in testosterone might reflect on the muscle mass, calling you to take on weight lifting exercises. Besides, stress also could materialise as fat, increasing the risk for cardiovascular diseases. It is best to initiate a consistent exercise regimen to reduce fat gain and also stress.

In the 50s…

Your focus will now be on delaying signs of ageing, which keeps growing with every passing month. Health, of course, is a top priority, but with age bringing on related aches and pains, your exercise regimen needs to be tailored around these concerns.  Another general 50s problem is the body’s tendency to curve forward, which can lead to chronic back pain. This can be alleviated by simply changing your posture and walking style, along with specific exercises to strengthen the abs and the back; even with yoga. Exercises that range from mild to moderate exertion are effective in the 50s.

In the 60s…

Reaching the mature 60s on a regular exercise routine will not only reduce your chances of premature deaths from chronic diabetes or heart disease, it will also strengthen you against falls. Your body will thank you for lifting weights at least a couple of times a week, for half an hour. Alternate that with upper body and lower body exercise sessions. Experts, however, suggest working out in a fitness class or in a group to keep things safe and make gyming fun.

In your 70s and above…

Do not give up on your exercise routine just because you are now a septuagenarian. Besides walking, you could also start swimming regularly – if you have been swimming, that is. Focus your workout on strength, flexibility and balance and give rigorous workouts a skip forever.

Enjoy what you are doing and you will remain fit, both physically and mentally.

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