Keeping a high fitness level is important at any age. Yet, men face a critical turning point in their lives once they get past their physical peaks.
But even if it can be difficult to get into shape, there are effective ways to craft a healthy lifestyle. This is essentially important for helping anyone get the most out of their 40s.
Instead of drastic overhauls and overly stringent regimens, men who create a realistic yet challenging workout routine will best position themselves to stay fit deep into their lives.
For anyone hoping to increase fitness and health levels, the following tips and guidelines can be a great starting point.
Health and Fitness Tips for Men in their 40s
Find a Good Fit for Your Body
Not everyone is meant to be a marathon runner or a triathlon participant. By the time we’re in our 40s, many of us have to deal with any number of minor (or major) physical limitations, particularly with joint problems.
While running remains a terrific option for cardio, cycling can often be the better fit for anyone who deals with joint pain or lingering injuries. With less pressure placed on joints, cycling can give you all of the benefits of running without the unnecessary bodily stress.
After all, gutting out a few runs a week is admirable for someone who has joint issues. But being able to comfortably string together four or five cycling sessions a week is much better for your short and long-term health.
Cycling is not the only way to get some cardio without stressing out ailing joints.
For a truly low-impact cardio workout, it’s tough to beat the overall advantages of swimming. Swimmers show an increase in lung capacity while still burning plenty of calories. Consequently, this improves heart performance, weight loss, and other enhancements.
From P90 to Tai Cheng, there are also countless low-impact exercise classes you can join, providing plenty of opportunities to create a personalized routine built to last.
A range of Beachbody streaming classes can even let you find the right fit for both body and lifestyle. You’re able to workout wherever you are, ensuring that you rarely have a good excuse to skip a workout.
Time to Take Your Diet Seriously
Many of us fly through our teens, 20s and 30s without having to worry too much about a healthy diet. This is especially for anyone who regularly stays active.
But that’s not a trend that remains intact for the long haul. You see, diet plays an increasingly important role in staying healthy as we age.
In fact, one of the biggest changes can be in relation to sodium levels. Older men are more susceptible to retaining water and developing heart disease associated with salt intake.
So, it’s important to find foods that are good substitutions for high-sodium meals. This is a simple and effective way to encourage long-term heart health without having to make any dramatic changes.
Additionally, you want to watch your fat intake. Make sure that you’re consuming more of the good fats – your mono- and polyunsaturated fats – and less of the bad ones – saturated fats!
Yet, many men also turn to supplements to make sure they’re getting all of the daily vitamins they need. Taking supplements to guarantee your body has enough Vitamin C, Vitamin E and zinc has shown to have benefits like helping to ward off ailments like age-related macular degeneration.
Let’s talk about bone health: there’s a big misconception that osteoporosis is mostly an issue facing women. But it can be just as big of a problem for men who don’t consume enough calcium.
An easy way to give your body a major boost is with the various protein shakes and hydration-enhancement products available through programs like Beachbody. They can easily help your body get into a healthy routine.
Otherwise, getting back to basics and making sure you eat enough vegetables – particularly the dark green variety – is an important step to toward getting the right nutrition.
Lengthen Stretching Routines
It’s not exactly a secret that we get less and less limber as we get older. However, most don’t bother to make any changes in stretching to take this into consideration.
While experts suggest that those under 40 hold stretches for 30 seconds or so, older men should actually hold stretches up to a full minute. This ensure muscles are appropriately stretched out to perform at their best!
Actually, taking the time to properly stretch limbs can end up having a snowball effect on a workout. You’ll make them easier to get through and more effective in general.
Consistency and Being Realistic
One of the biggest workout mistakes we often make is being inconsistent in our approach. We don’t make it a priority! Unfortunately, this is a great way to limit your chances of truly getting into shape.
It’s great to test your endurance occasionally with an epic workout…we’re not stopping you from that! But, you’re much better off focusing on finding regular times and workouts you can easily slip into your everyday life.
Some men in their 40s try to force their way into a 5 a.m. workout regimen that’s not conducive to their existing lifestyle. Others will jump straight into a heavy workout that is not sustainable.
These unrealistic goals often end in defeat; ultimately increasing the likelihood of giving up entirely.
Instead, remaining patient with the process is much more important than attempting to be a workout hero. Successful workout routines are built around gradual and incremental increases in difficulty.
Get the Right Equipment
Finding the appropriate equipment that will help keep you in shape has multiple advantages.
For starters, good sneakers are invaluable to just about anyone who wants to take health and fitness seriously. The last thing you need is another excuse not to workout, and those old sneakers that give you blisters when you hike or jog are sending the wrong message.
While you definitely don’t need to buy the most expensive and hippest sneakers on the market, having a comfortable pair that you don’t even have to think about is essential if you’re planning on doing most land-based workouts.
Also, many minor joint issues and physical ailments can be helped with simple items like a back, knee or ankle brace. Additionally, it isn’t a bad idea to make some sort of appropriate investment in your equipment, as this type of financial commitment can act as encouragement to stick with a workout routine.
In the grand scheme of things, spending a small amount extra to have the right equipment could turn out to be a very small price to pay if it increases your long-term health and fitness outlook.
Regardless of which tips you bring to your everyday life, it’s important to keep in mind that a positive lifestyle change is what yields the best overall benefits.
At the heart of the process is your personal mindset and ability to project over the longer term, which is why those who see the bigger picture tend to be at a distinct advantage.
But if you’re able to adopt a lifestyle you can honestly see yourself living six months or a year down the road, you’ll be well on your way to staying fit no matter what the aging process throws at you.