Losing Weight and the Mature Individual

October 5, 2013
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weight loss for aging people

with Ron the Trainer

weight loss for aging people

with Ron the Trainer

Is weight gain that is resistant to loss inevitable with growing older?  Experts everywhere agree “NO” and we are here to help you break the chain of frustration.

Bob’s Experience

At a recent party I saw some friends and met some new ones – all of them were over 50 or seniors. And while there the normal topic of “what do you do” came up. After I mentioned 50plusPlusFit and being a personal trainer, an age old myth was mentioned – that as you age it becomes more difficult to lose weight, claiming reduced metabolism. Well I did my best to dispel that myth.

You see it really isn’t a naturally reduced metabolism that occurs as we age. No, it is generally an un-naturally occurring increasing inactivity by most. Your metabolism does naturally decrease if you don’t move, and unfortunately because of life’s other responsibilities and interruptions, we neglect being physically active. Most of us were way more active as kids and adolescents, but we slowly let lack of activity creep into our normal routine. Want more proof? Sadly today’s youth is nowhere near as active as we were 40 years ago, and of course now America has a childhood obesity epidemic. It is lack of activity folks!

And of course to lose weight, the people I was talking with had only tried dieting, not exercise or any activity beyond their normal day-to-day.

Basically I told this group that they can indeed lose unwanted pounds by combining a healthy, balanced diet with a regular exercise regimen. Many questions arose about how much exercise and how many calories to cut, etc. and I handled those as best I could at a party, but I also directed them to the 50plusPlusFitOnline Personal Trainer, because they can find all those answers and helpful tools like online diet tracking and a daily calorie calculator to determine just how many calories you need or should cut to drop the weight.

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I know that Ron has had more experience with clients’ weight loss, so let’s turn it over to him.

Ron’s Expertise

Just about the time I think I’ve put this topic to rest, it comes back! Today, I began working with a 60 year-old woman who has been working for 18 months to lose about 20 pounds with no success. We discussed her meal planning, quantities, alcohol intake and her workout routine. There were a few holes in her plan.

You see, she once had a young inexperienced trainer who told her to walk the treadmill at 3.5 miles per hour for 1 hour, 3 days per week. He also prescribed a patent list of about 10 exercises for her to do each of the 3 days she was in the club for the treadmill. And she faithfully followed these instructions for 18 months – with no weight loss.

Today’s session was centered on shaking up the types of cardio, monitoring heart rate and increasing from 22 minutes to 35-45 minutes per cardio workout. So, we stepped onto elliptical trainers, I asked her to maintain 80 strides per minute. After 3 minutes she was too exhausted to continue. You see, her body had become very complacent with regard to the treadmill – but the elliptical was something very new for her.

Going forward, her goal is to work with the elliptical, stair stepper and rower until she’s able to do each for 35-45 minutes. She will begin with 3-5 minutes on each, as she can tolerate and finish out the cardio with the treadmill. Next session, I will introduce a functional core, full-body workout using body weight and free weight – no machines.  

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The point is, as we’ve said many times before, keep your workouts fresh. Challenge yourself! If your workout doesn’t really leave you more than a little challenged, your body won’t show the changes you’re hoping for. Even after 50 or more senior, many of us will find that we could do more – if we try.

So, if you’re doing chest presses, add a couple of pounds or additional reps. Or, make it a “push-up” day! Are you fresh out of ideas? Check out our Online Personal Trainer for workouts, meal plans and a place to track your progress! Keep challenging yourself – you can do it because you’re 50plusPlusFit!