The old days of “no pain, no gain” are definitely in our rear-view mirror.
With, lived-in joints, sleepless nights, and chronic low levels of stress, it’s time to look at the minimum effective dose for results.
Getting just enough exercise to maintain or improve your fitness. Most commonly what I see is too much intensity, too often. This is especially true for women that are premenopausal.
More is NOT better, for so many reasons.
Some of these reasons are not hard to guess, like
- making you feel hungry causing increased intake of the wrong kind of fuel
Some reasons that you may not have thought of include
- Your body needs time to recover between workouts, more time if you are not sleeping well due to hot flashes.
- It can make you tired, which means you’re less active the rest of the day, burning fewer calories than would have without exercising, (I so remember this when I was training for marathons, a medium to long run would have me napping and on the couch for most of the afternoon).
- Doing too many long or super-intense workouts can increase the hormone cortisol and many women already have high cortisol levels. High levels of cortisol make it hard to lose weight, specifically around the belly.
The key is to find the right mix for your fitness level, your goals, and your likes/dislikes.
The American Heart Association recommends
- Strength training that hits all your major muscle groups at least twice a week.
- For cardio,150 minutes of moderate activity or 75 minutes of vigorous activity every week, spread out over the course of the week.
- PLUS … health experts recommend cutting back on how much time you spend sitting or lying around.
Let’s simplify it!
Strength Training comes first!
2x a week at a minimum. This is vital to maintain muscle mass as you age. Losing muscle mass is normal as we age, but you can fight against it by doing 2 strength training sessions a week.
This will decrease the amount of muscle you lose with age and keep your bones strong.
Keeping muscles lean and bones strong will help keep your joints supported and strong, keep your metabolism up and will help maintain your balance. This is the key to thriving through this season of your life.
Cardio definitely has a place. We are looking for progress, not perfection. You can start with strength and progress to adding in cardio.
At least start and start with strength.
When strength training becomes a habit then you can add cardio.
I share more details about strength training for women in mid-life and older via my newsletter and on social media.
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If you are ready to tap into a PROVEN plan to have more energy, feel amazing in your clothes, and lose weight, The Varisty Hybrid program can help you put strength training, cardio, and nutrition together in a way that works for your lifestyle and your values. We use both live training sessions, regular live coaching calls, and the Uplyft Fitness App to provide the ultimate goal setting, accountability, and results.
Check out the Online Training Tab to learn more and set up a free discovery call.