This is the final installment from Canadian trainer/athlete JennyB, who was kind enough to respond to your questions about aging, weight loss/management and our dear buddies, the hormones
Both men and women have hormonal changes. For the purpose of this article, I’ll focus on women’s process of aging. Indeed the peri-menopause to menopause process is the sudden dropping off hormones. We feel different-drive, motivation are lower and yes, weight around the middle seems to magically appear. Self-care with gentleness is a priority. Adjustments in training need to be made to help facilitate positive change but also allow for recovery. Prioritizing heavy weight lifting, thoughtful gratitude walking and one high end aerobic effort are effective. There are many ways for your training to enhance your weight loss goals.
Your relationship with food needs to gentle as it is very easy to slip into food stimulating energy or stress coping. My approach to help women has been to become aware of tendencies- hunger, rest, stress level and motivation then methodically implement small changes. I find it beneficial to use the garmin fitness watch and app method of sleep tracking and wellness check in.
Caloric intake needs to be adjusted as our internal calorie clock does slow down with aging. I use two approaches- body composition on with a bio impedance scale to show lean body mass (muscle) and percent body fat as muscle does way more than fat. Secondly, striving to reduce calories 250-400/day while training will help your goals.
A great way is to increase nutrient-dense foods such as protein breakfast smoothie which includes spinach and blueberries instead of quick oats, honey and milk. Quinoa fruit and nut salad instead of a sandwich at lunch. Again, not labeling bad food; just better, nutrient dense food into your schedule when you can. We can all fall into patterns with nutrition choices, drinking and mindless or soothing behaviours that may not help combat aging.
Consistency with training while enjoying the process, are keys to wellness. Shifts in nutrition and training will benefit your life as we age to navigate the waters of change.
Many thanks to JennyB for her input. I want to also acknowledge that she was kind enough to send me some photos of clients of hers, all of an age, and women who are enjoying being healthy at any age and as their bodies change. Here's another:
I would invite others in our Saga circle to offer their takes on how they are managing the inevitable physical changes which move bits and pieces of ourselves around without our permission. Perhaps the biggest takeaway from the above for me was that these last two years, driven as they were by being forced inside too much, I've had to watch out for wanting a chunk of cheese and redirect to the celery with a bit of hummus instead.
I still need the protein but the difference in calories, especially when you add the valuable fiber from the celery along with that cold, satisfying crunch, adds up over time.
While I've been able to eat a bit more heartily than many due to my training, the last two years' dearth of big trips and all the surgeries that set me on the sidelines have meant that my eating habits had to be changed. Where they didn't, I paid a price, which is what I'm dealing with now, as are we all.
Thanks again to those of you posing the question, and most especially those who are offering the answers and providing discussion.
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