Top 10 tips to become fitter and stronger in 2022 for women over 40
Here is a list to get you inspired for 2022.
- Make a plan for each day – once a week or every evening (whatever suits you best) work out when you are going to do your training in the day or days ahead. Write it down in your diary. Schedule it like it is an important appointment. Tell other members of the family about your plans and make sure that they know that you will be busy having time for yourself. When working out the best time for training remember that early in the day is usually best. It will be done and you are less likely to be “too tired” or “too busy” to do it. Training does not just happen – we all run out of time, out of puff. It needs to be planned.
- Work towards a fitness goal – Working towards a fitness goal can be a great way to develop some consistency and discipline around training. You might decide to do a half marathon or a 10 km run. You might decide to aim for a bodyweight squat. It could be an ocean swim or a long hike. You will feel a real sense of achievement as you chip away getting closer to your goal.
- Mix it up – If a fitness goal is not on the agenda enjoy the ability to mix things up so that you train to match the way your body feels. Some days it might be a run. Other days might be weight training. Go for a swim. Do a yoga class. Do an online class. If your only wish is to be healthy and happy you have the luxury of changing things up so that you do not get bored and so that your training is balanced and sustainable.
- Buy more vegetables and learn how to prepare them – most of us do not eat enough vegetables, while at the same time we eat too many processed carbs, meat and sugar. Make an effort this year to incorporate more vegetables into your every day. It might be packets of frozen veggies from the freezer section. It might be a vegetable soup you prepare on the weekend. It might be a whole roasted cauliflower you make for dinner while roasting some other vegetables to add to salads. Vegetables added to an omelette. Vegetables in your smoothie. Vegetables tossed in a wok for a stir fry. A vegetable dish when you eat out.
- Drink less alcohol – I know this one will not be popular. But it can be a real game changer for many people. If you drink every day try having a few alcohol free days a week or drink only on the weekend. Alcohol is so easy for our body to process. We use it up first before we use the energy from the food we eat. It weakens out resolve and makes us more likely to mindlessly snack. It makes us feel tired and anxious the next day and we are more likely to skip training. Cutting down on alcohol will also do wonders for your skin as you get older.
- Find a workout buddy or group – occasionally I meet people who say that they prefer to train on their own. Some people are very good at training themselves and enjoy the time being alone. If you are someone who finds it hard to motivate yourself to train alone – find a group or another person and commit to making each other stick to the program.
- Fix up your sleep – if you are not sleeping well sort it out. Do not just put up with it for months on end. If you are already following a good sleep hygiene plan (no phone before bed, comfortable sleeping environment etc) speak to a GP or a pharmacist about how you can improve your sleep. The flow on effects to other areas of your life, including weight control will surprise you.
- Work on your weakness – most people know exactly what their problems are when it comes to nutrition. I rarely meet anyone who is truly mystified as to why they are gaining weight or not feeling their best when it comes to their diet. There is usually something that can be actively worked on. For example, you might find yourself grazing and picking all day. You might be a late night snacker. You might eat too many sweet treats. You might be eating too much overall. Pick one thing you can work on and actively try harder for a few weeks and see if you can make a new healthier habit. Do not try and tackle all your issues at once. Do it one by one and you are more likely to succeed.
- Forget about “motivation” – unless you have your wedding or a school reunion coming up motivation is a terrible thing to rely on. This year try working towards consistency and discipline. Every time you make an excuse as to why you are skipping training or deviating from the nutrition plan you are following – remember your commitment to being a disciplined person who cares about their health and well being.
- Walk – keeping a high step count every day really makes a difference. A lot of our members noticed how much better they felt when they increased their step count during lockdown. Find a way to walk more. Maybe walk for half an hour in your lunch hour. Walk after dinner. Get up early and go for a walk. If you walk more over a period of months it will start to have an impact on how you look and feel.