So, you aren’t in your twenties anymore. Guess what I have to say to that? Good riddance! Those days were great, but these days in your 40s, 50s, and 60s are even better.
Having said that, I know we can’t just live carefree like many of our 20-year-old selves did. We now have to invest in our health daily to build a strong foundation for the future. In other words, we have to act before gravity does! In chapter three of my book Fitness After 40, I have included tips to help you live your best life in every decade. The forties are the new thirties so welcome to your physical and mental prime time. You know enough to push toward success and are strong enough to look and feel as good as ever. Now is the time to use that brain and body to maintain momentum. Here’s how:
- Get on the scale: Your weight doesn’t lie, and it’s a great baseline to judge your progress.
- Measure your waist: Don’t let belly fat be your cause of chronic disease. Men, your waist shouldn’t be over 40 inches, and ladies, 35 inches.
- Get physical: Don’t wait until you’re sick. See your doctor for a physical examination.
- Move it: An object in motion stays in motion.
- Save your heart: Don’t make its job harder. Work that organ!
- Control your blood pressure: Manage stress, limit salt intake, and get plenty of intense aerobic exercise.
- Think: Where have you been? Where do you want to go? Are you really doing what’s important to get there?
- Finish or start Fitness After 40: Read it, live it, reap the benefits
The Big Five-Oh
Whether you were fit in your forties and are ready to rumble or you’re just showing up to the active aging party, fear not. It’s never too late to invest in your health. In addition to everything I said to do in your forties, here’s what you need to do in your fifties:
- Family tree: Think about your parents’ health. Their challenges may be in your future unless you decide to take control.
- Cardio, cardio: Say it with me over and over. Get off the couch! Take charge of your cardiovascular health!
- Protect those joints: One pound around your belly means 7 to 10 pounds of pressure on your weight-bearing joints. Lose that weight now!
- Keep your mind sharp: Learn a skill, teach a skill, do something new.
- Check your bone density and vitamin D levels: Weak bones are silent until it’s too late.
Your Sixties (and Beyond)
Enter the decade of troubleshooting what you built in your forties and fifties. Here’s what’s important:
- You guessed it… Cardiovascular health: Meet with your doctor. If you smoke, quit. If you have diabetes, make sure it’s under control. There is still time to maintain a strong heart!
- Be kind to your mind: Treat your brain with smart nutrition. Keep learning, engaging, and maintaining social relationships.
- Immune system support: Again, smart nutrition will help here, along with multivitamins and antioxidants.
Now that you know what’s important in terms of your age, it’s time to get started!