Thursday 18 July 2019

Fit after 50: One of the biggest challenges of ageing is getting weaker, but exercising can change this

Don't waist time: Are your clothes not fitting anymore?
Don't waist time: Are your clothes not fitting anymore?
Karl Henry

Karl Henry

Welcome to my new six-part series, Fit after 50. My goal over the next six weeks is to show you just how important health and exercise are as you get older.

This might be a time when you are facing increasing age-related challenges in your own life, but I'm here to help you do what you can to improve your own health and fitness.

In weeks to come, we'll be taking an in-depth look at what the best exercise is for your age group. What type of exercises should you be doing? How often should you be doing them? How hard should you be working at each session?

Later on, we'll look at what you should be eating and what you really should be avoiding, as well as ensuring you keep on getting improvements in your health as you progress, taking away every possible barrier to health that exists and showing you how to overcome those barriers.

Sound exciting to you? I hope so. My mission for this column, is to make exercise so easy that there are no excuses, no fears and no reasons not to do it.

This is especially true as you get older - you become surrounded by a comfort zone, a safe area. A zone you fear getting out of because change is scary. This zone gives you reasons to excuse health issues that stare you in the face such as:

  • getting out of breath walking up a flight of stairs;
  • clothes not fitting;
  • not taking doctor's advice;
  • gaining weight.

But over the coming weeks I am going to help you make that leap, make those changes and dramatically improve your health.

You see I work with clients like you every day of the week, who are afraid to make those changes and I help them make the leap, just like I will with you. Each week I will take a different topic and give you all of my knowledge on that topic and make you realise it isn't as scary after all.

The reality is that health is crucial at every age. As we get older, health plays a crucial role in how we age. In essence, ageing healthier will improve the quality of your life.

Eating better and exercising can slow the ageing process and the impacts of ageing, no matter when you start. Those who are healthier in their 50s and beyond will have a positive impact on all of the issues we associate with age, such as:

  • cholesterol;
  • blood pressure;
  • bone density;
  • osteoporosis;
  • increasing waistline: aiming to get under 40 inches;
  • weight gains: averaging one stone per decade;
  • arthritis;
  • cardiovascular disease;
  • cancer;
  • diabetes;
  • fatigue;
  • depression;
  • anxiety;
  • circulation problems;
  • sleep issues;
  • manage the effects of the menopause.

These are just some of the age related issues that improving your health will have a positive impact on.

One of the biggest impacts of ageing is that you get weaker. You lose lean muscle tissue and gain body fat, impacting on your life on a frighteningly fast basis.

By exercising more, at the right intensity, eating properly and just believing in yourself - that's all I am asking you to do - you will be able to learn what you need to do to change this, improve your life and become stronger and leaner in the process.

There will be no medication or cost required.Obviously, I don't recommend coming off any medication - before you start any exercise programme you should consult your GP if you have any concerns whatsoever, but I think that people often underestimate just how beneficial movement and eating properly can be to your health.

It can dramatically change things in a short time frame too. I always tell my clients to give it at least 14 days. Any of the topics I discuss will make an impact on your health and your life in that timeframe. If you see such a difference that quickly, then you will realise the power of making these changes.

If you don't believe me then why not take this information I am going to give you, put it into action and see just what a difference six weeks can make to your health.

Next week: We'll look at walking, jogging and cycling - all popular exercises for the over 50s, but what do you need to be aware of?

Irish Independent

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