Just because you're over the age of 35 it doesn't mean you are doomed to become unfit. For most people they've never hit their maximum potential. You may not be 21 anymore but it doesn't mean you can't make big changes in the way you perform, look and feel. Maximum potential at 21 vs 55 will of course look different, but I'd argue the majority of people don't even get close to this. Here's some tips and ideas to help you get there...
Be specific. General guidelines of working on mobility is all well and good but it might not get you actual results. Say a movement, such as a overhead press, gives you trouble and you can't quite hit good range of motion. Work on 1 or 2 areas that might restrict it. Don't go crazy on every body part possible. Focus these for at least 4 weeks so you can test / re-test.
Example: Thoracic Opener, accumulate 10 minutes per week. Test overhead press position on day 1 and day 28.
If this wasn't effective at improving your position then move onto the next. Test / re-test again. This will be a process of elimination. Ideally ask a coach to guide you through this and they will be able to speed up the process. Quick warning, mobility takes a fair amount of time. It might get a bit boring and motivation to do it will fall. But those who have the discipline to stick with it will be rewarded with better range of motion, efficiency and reduced pain.
It's easier said than done but setting realistic goals will help guide what you do in and out the gym. Looking to reach top level of competition? Then your lifestyle needs to reflect that as well as your training. Going on the lash each weekend, working a stressful job, not getting enough sleep because of the kids and working out 6 days per week will destroy you in the long run. You might of got away with it for a few more years at a younger age, but that time has passed.
What are you willing to sacrifice? If you set yourself a target but you just aren't willing to sacrifice enough to get there, you'll end up wasting months/years feeling shit about yourself for not getting there. If you have a 40 inch waist, getting to a 36 inch waist will require some change but not an overhaul of your life. Getting from a 36 inch waist to a 28 inch waist is a whole other level of dedication.
Maybe you don't need a six pack. Nothing magical is going to happen. You'll take a selfie, stick it on Instagram, get a hit of dopamine for every like.. then what? Your friends/family won't love the moody (but lean) version of you and you might get fed up of having to miss out on social events.
I'm not saying eat whatever you want and become obese. "Love your body, whatever it looks like". No, that's bullshit. Being overweight is unhealthy however you look at it. Just don't get caught up in thinking in extremes. Go reach your maximum potential .. Your maximum potential for a lifestyle you want to lead. This might involve cake. A life without cake isn't one I want to live.
We've all heard it before, we know we should do it. So let's actually do it! Aim to pee clear in the morning, afternoon and night (don't down a glass of water before bed or you'll be up all night going to the toilet). More on hydration in future posts but for now, keep it simple and take action.
Aim to hit half your body weight (lbs) in ounces, adjust from here. If it's hot or you've had a particularly sweaty workout, start to increase.
Training in class.
You can't and shouldn't train like a youngster. Train smart instead. Going at each workout at 100% is going to get you injured and/or burnt out. Listening to the training stimulus will help with this, if the coach says it's meant to be a light, more aerobic workout.. then approach it so, don't get caught up in the whiteboard. You may also choose to take a workout at 50% effort for the day if you don't feel great. Listen to your body and tell the coach you will take it easy. The idea is to continue to train for years to come, not 6 months on then 3 months off because of injury.
Having a deload week every 3-8 weeks is extremely beneficial. That means reducing weights used and intensity of effort. Example: Nancy 5 rounds for time of; 400m run 15 overhead squats @ 42.5/30kg. There's a few options here.
Option 1: Reduce the effort. Go at it for 50-75%. If your previous time was 15 minutes for this workout, aim to go through it at a 20 minute pace.
Option 2: Reduce the weight/complexity. An 42.5/30kg overhead squat will tax your body more so than a goblet squat. Swap out the OHS for a 20/16kg kettlebell for 15 reps each round.
Option 3: Reduce the impact. Using the rower/airbike vs running for a total of 2km will put less stress/impact through your body.
Training with a coach.
If classes aren't quite doing it for you and you don't want to have to worry about self regulating workouts, then individual design might be for you. Here your coach will design a nutrition/fitness plan for you and tell you exactly what's needed. Send either myself or Glen a message if you're interested. Other gyms might argue against this but at the end of the day, a personal program (that's well designed) will out perform a group program, it's just fact.
More advice to come in the following weeks/months. Keep letting the team know what you'd like us to tackle for the blog. Thanks!