Middle age is the time when hormones change and metabolism slows down. Added to this, ailments like arthritis and joint problems start to creep up on us. These factors and more tend to drive us into a less active lifestyle. Menopause and postmenopausal symptoms also beset us at this age. Even men can experience midlife crisis. These factors can lead to depression and obsessions with eating. This leads to the proverbial “middle age spread.”
Given these factors it is more important than ever to keep in shape after 50. However your regime will be a little different than someone in their 20’s. Firstly you may have any or all of the above problems and more, which will definitely force you into a less rigorous exercise routine.
Underlying ailments like arthritis can leave you with stiffness and pain. You will need to gradually ease into a routine rather than starting a vigorous regime. It is very necessary to slowly work up a routine rather than straining your body right at the start.
Your goals should be to gradually strengthen and bring more use into arthritic joints. The more you do this the better you will be. You will not make ailments like arthritis completely go away, but will make the condition much better with regular exercises. Even a brisk daily walk for a few miles will help you.
Exercise is a great remedy for depression. Actual physical exercise can help to alleviate depression, as well as making you look and feel better. When you exercise on a regular basis you will not only take your mind off being depressed but will give you a new purpose in life which will help you feel better both physically and mentally.
Diet changes: Metabolism slows down considerably in middle life and beyond, making it important to reduce carbohydrates and increase fiber and protein into your diet. You will find you need less food so train yourself to eat less. Try to be extra careful not to indulge in too many sweet or fatty foods, as these are harder to digest and are big weight gainers.
Try to eat less refined foods and more whole grain foods as your digestive system is not as strong at this age and you will need more fiber to help your digestive system work well. More fiber in your diet will help you eat less, as you will feel fuller with less food. Try to eat more fruits and vegetables, as you need more vitamins and minerals at this age. Calcium especially gets depleted and you may consider taking some supplements.
Try to keep yourself busy with hobbies and social gatherings to avoid getting obsessed by food. Do not let advanced years get the better of you. Just because you are in your middle years does not mean you have one foot in the grave. Remember you are only as old as you feel. So get into a regular routine of exercise even if it is just a good brisk daily walk plus try to be careful with your diet and you can enjoy a long full life, despite your advancing years.