Rinse and Repeat by Amber Shaw
Written by: Amber Shaw
One of the valuable lessons I’ve learned as I’ve gotten older – particularly after I hit 40 – is that health & wellness doesn’t live in a diet or some extreme exercise program. We all know neither of those are sustainable and they make us miserable!
What I have found is that it’s all about LIFESTYLE.
Lifestyle is about creating simple, rinse-and-repeat habits that are easy to incorporate into your life, ones you enjoy, and are dial movers when it comes to your health.
One of the key components of a healthy lifestyle is a consistent exercise program but specifically – strength training.
After the age of 40, women lose on average ½ lb of muscle per year. With our drop in hormones and slowed metabolism, the loss in muscle furthers the drop in out metabolic rate that can cause weight gain.
One of the biggest ways to combat that is to strength train. Strength training or resistance training involves physical exercise to improve your strength and endurance. It commonly done with lifting weights but I also love resistance bands which are super easy to use at home.
For women, regular strength training can also help to improve bone health, prevent injury and also lose body fat as muscle burns more calories at rest opposed to fat.
When starting any exercise program and especially when trying to establish a lifestyle that you will stick to, it is important to start slowly – think baby steps.
I recommend to my clients just starting out to start with just 2 days a week.
Not only will that help with injury prevention but it will also help you mentally adapt to your new habit without all of the stress and pressure we can put on ourselves. Lasting change starts with taking small steps and celebrating the wins all along the way.
If you don’t have time to get to the gym, you can absolutely get your 2 days in at home. You can even incorporate some simple exercises during your favorite TV show.
To get started and make sure you muscles are warm and ready, you will want to do at least a 3 minute warm-up of running in place, jumping jacks or even walking up and down the stairs. You just need to get your body warm!
To work your upper body, you will want to do pushups during the 30-60 second commercial breaks. These can be done from your hands or your knees.
For lower body, I am a huge fan of stationary lunges. You can mix it up between commercials and do different variations like front lunges, back lunges and side lunges.
You will also want to work your core. I recommend holding a plank. Because most commercials are 30-60 seconds, the goal is to work your way up to holding the plank for the entire commercial.
On your “off” days, I want to encourage you just to focus on moving your body. So that could be a walk with friends, or maybe a hike with your partner or even roller skating with your kids! Have fun with it and relax into your new healthy lifestyle!
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