Many people are under the impression that as you get older, you have no choice but to gain weight. Rubbish! Yes it may be true that each year after the age of forty, your body will produce approximately 1% less growth hormone for every year of age, but if you move 1% more and eat a balanced diet, muscle mass can be increased right up to the age of 75!
Take a minute to gaze into the future and ponder this. Do you see yourself at the age of 80 sitting in a rocking chair on your front porch waiting out your days? Or do you see yourself as a young and active 80 year old, getting involved in outdoor activities and healthy enough to be able to enjoy your time with family and friends?
The way you see yourself as an older version of you, will give you a pretty accurate indication of what YOU will allow yourself to become if you continue the same lifestyle.
The real reason we often gain weight as we get older, is due to the increased pace of life we experience. With less available time, we become more drawn towards the convenience of eating processed foods and tend to move less.
I have had clients that have been in their 60’s with ripped abs and stronger than most 20 year olds, so age does not have to be a reason for weight gain.
That said, it’s not hard to see why so many people have made the assumption that as you get older, weight gain is inevitable. It is probable, but at the same time, preventable.
Another clue as to why some of us struggle to effectively manage our health and weight as we get older, may come to light if we take a moment to remember our childhood.
For most of us, in our pre teen years, we were bursting at the seams with energy and cramming every waking minute with as much life as possible.
Rising at sparrows fart and last to bed at night, we would often challenge our parents’ wishes to get a decent nights sleep. Now as an adult with the weight of the world on our shoulders, we remain in our beds for as long as humanly possible, thinking of all the reasons to stay in bed as opposed to getting up to greet the new day. Our new best friend has now become the snooze button and our worst enemy, the alarm clock it’s attached to!
With not a care in the world and so many things to do, our lives used to revolve around creation, wishes and dreams of what may be possible. This often becomes quite the opposite when we get older. Succumbing to the stresses involved with working or raising children, eating food for comfort not necessity, paying bills and just trying to survive.
For those of you like me that went to school over 20 years ago, you would have
1. Eaten far less processed foods
2. Eaten at set times as per your scheduled breaks.
We ate what we were given in the breaks we were given and didn’t have the option to raid the fridge or the closest vending machine to satisfy random food cravings. With our choices reduced, discipline was far easier to keep in check.
With no drivers license and no car, we were forced to use our feet as our mode of transport, burning more calories and getting far more fresh air than your average adult.
Socializing when we were kids was playing with a frisbee on the beach. These days, socializing is commonly done in a restaurant or bar with a few beers and calorie dense foods.
So the first step to rewinding the body, is to act like a child. Move more, eat less processed foods, be disciplined as to when you eat, enjoy life and your energy levels will go up and you will feel alive again!