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Fitness After Forty - Hope for Aging Baby Boomers

Jul 31, 2008
Where did my waist go and how do I find it again?
As baby boomers move through the middle age years they find their bodies aren't what they used to be. Their, once upon a time, firm abdomens now have a Pillsbury dough boy quality about them that extends completely around to their side abdomen. While this was an adorable quality in the TV character, any resemblance to this in ourselves sends most of us shrieking where did my waist go and when did I lose it? Once perky buttocks are reaching toward the floor and flesh is no longer tight but loose and beginning to sag.

What has happened to our bodies? Unfortunately, we have reached middle age. The benefits of hitting middle age is that we are more financially stable, having perhaps achieved personal or professional goals that we set for ourselves in our early years. We are enjoying the fruits of our labor, put our kids through college and are traveling and enjoying our life. The downside of middle age is that our bodies don't quite work like they used to. We are in the years where our muscle mass begins to atrophy, our bones are not as strong as they used to be and our metabolism does not seem to keep up with the quantity and quality of foods that we are eating. Therefore, the inevitable weight gain and middle aged mid-section. Go ahead, just say it, belly fat!!!!

Fit after Forty
The good news is that we do not have to accept this. Unlike our parents, we grew up in age of fitness. Whether you are someone who incorporated exercise into your life at a young age and are finding that it might take a change in that program to manage your weight through the middle years, or are someone that never really had to exercise and find yourself in a position of needing to start a program mid-life to feel better and keep in shape, it is something you can control and take charge of.

If your goal is to gain muscle mass and lose the fat, then a balance of cardio, weight bearing exercise and proper nutrition are key to achieving that goal. Weight bearing exercises several times a week will not only increase your bone mass, which we lose as we age, but it will also help to boost your metabolism and therefore burn calories. Exercises such as walking, jogging, and biking will improve cardiovascular health.

Before you begin any exercise, stretching is recommended. Our body loses it's elasticity as we age and so stretching becomes more and more important in order to maintain and/or improve flexibility and mobility. Make your middle years fun and healthy. Find activities you enjoy that will also help keep you fit and feeling good into your later years. At this age, it's all about quality of life. Make the most of yours.
About the Author
Maria Walker is the founder of Getway Fitness Inc., a destination fitness retreat held at luxury resorts in and outside the U.S. To learn more about our fun fitness retreats and and obtain information on our Fit After Forty Retreat visit us at Getaway Fitness Retreats
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