When we were 20 we really didn’t consider what happens later in life in this time and place we now call menopause…simply because nobody talked about it! I remember thinking that nothing would change during perimenopause and menopause as long as you “stuck to your plan”. Jokes on me! I totally believed that until I started working through it myself. And let me tell you…you don’t really know what it’s like until you’re walkin’ through it. BUT, the more we talk about it, the easier it becomes for all. Menopause has absolutely nothing to do with how “fit” and “healthy” you are. It’s biology and it’s what happens.
But thank goodness we are alive right now. There’s never been a time to be midlife than RIGHT NOW.
“For your age…”
Women are really doing themselves a disservice by tacking “for my age” or “for your age” onto things. Saying “I look good…for my age!” But what is that even supposed to mean?! Yes, we have an IDEA of what certain ages “look like” but it’s ALL based off what we know about that age and others we have seen at that age. But it doesn’t mean it HAS to be that way for everyone.
We are living in a time where we CAN change the landscape for what the next 10, 20, and 30+ years looks like for us. Yes, we have control…but we don’t have a model. So what do we do? We observe what has happened in the past and fail to realize that we are going to age very differently than other generations if we decide NO it’s going to stop here!
What do we need to change about working out in midlife?
1. We need intensity more now than we ever have, but we don’t need more of it. We don’t need more duration and more days per week and more reps, but we do need more intensity and to make it count. I like to think of “intensity” as doing what is challenging…for you. As long as it’s safe for you, we need to:
- Lift heavier (and until failure)
- Get breathless regularly (HIIT)
- Work on bone density, muscle, and brain
If we DON’T execute our workouts with intensity in midlife, we are compensating for what happens during aging. We are losing the ability to produce energy and hurting our mitochondria. From science, we know that 70 years olds can recreate the same amount of mitochondria as 20 year olds can IF they train well.
2. We need to prioritize strength training. And NO this doesn’t mean become a body builder. We don’t have as many hormones as it takes to build muscle easily in midlife, so we have to work for it.
3. Base building. The power of walking and having a base of movement every day makes a really big difference. If you don’t move it, you lose it and the more you move, the better off you are going to be!
This and so much more on this podcast!
About Debra Atkinson
Debra Atkinson is an American life coach and fitness expert, transformational speaker, author and web television host. She is the owner of Voice for Fitness, Flipping 50, and Flipping 50 TV.
Debra Atkinson has over three decades experience as a successful fitness entrepreneur, university lecturer in kinesiology, and international fitness presenter. Her mission is to raise the quality of service in the fitness industry and raise your expectations for aging so you can reach your greatest potential at every stage of life. She presents to leading fitness industry associations including IDEA, NSCA, Can-Fit-Pro, ICAA and Athletic Business and contributes to many of their periodicals. She is a frequent contributor for Huffington Post, ShareCare, Prime Women, LivingBetter50, and Easy Health Options and others.
She’s been consulted for articles in USA Today and Prevention Magazine regarding women’s health through the exercise-hormone connection. She is the creator of the web-based Flipping 50 TV show, the Flipping 50 podcast and leads dynamic workshops and coaches private clients live and online teaching women how to love the body they live in and build confidence for every aspect of life with a flipping fit foundation. “No matter what the question is, the answer is exercise.”
In this episode, you will learn:
- Why you need to make exercise a joy to do
- How 50 doesn’t mean you can’t be fit
- How to get in shape after 50
- What exercises you should be doing in midlife