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Physical Fitness & Middle Age

By Bill Rollwitz, C.P.T.


Middle Age hits us all, mostly right in the stomach! We look in the mirror, and the person looking back at us does not look happy. Years of stress, improper eating, not enough sleep, and lack of exercise has begun to take its toll on our bodies. Each year, our energy levels seem to be zapped. When we come home from work, we sit on the couch, watch TV (thank God for the remote control!), eat improperly, go to sleep, wake up tired, and start the day all over again. Do you ever feel like you are walking down a spiral staircase? The further down you go it seems like you pick up momentum and are now walking down faster than before.

Well, take it from me, it does not have to be that way. You can change the way you look and feel, but unfortunately there is no magic pill to take. It took years for you to get like that and it will take time to change things. However, it is possible if you want to bad enough. In order to change, YOU have to change: your eating, nutritional, exercise, and lifestyle habits.

Eating Habits

This is the one area that most people focus on exclusively. They go from diet to diet, and wonder why they do not lose weight. In fact, some people actually gain weight during dieting. Why is this?

First of all, it is important to understand what is going on inside. Every one of us has a metabolism rate. Without going into a biochemistry lesson, simply put this is the rate in which you burn fat. When you are young, your metabolism rate is typically high. Remember when you could eat anything you wanted and not gain weight? Well, as we age, our metabolism rate slows down.

What you eat and how often you eat has a great impact on your metabolism rate. When your body is used to eating a certain way, and then you drastically reduce your calories, your body thinks it is starving and slows your metabolism rate down even further. This is why some people actually gain weight on diets. The trick is to eat properly to increase your metabolism rate, not decrease it. How do you do that?

First, eat five small meals a day, not two or three. This way you keep a steady supply of nutrients in your body. Your brain does not think you are starving and will not lower your metabolism rate. Second, eat foods low in fat, like chicken or fish. Avoid fried foods completely. Sorry about that. Third, eat the right kind of carbohydrates. Sweet potatoes and rice are good carbohydrates. Sugar is not a good carbohydrate.

To determine how many calories you are consuming, multiply the grams of fat by 9. Multiply the grams of carbohydrates by 4 and the grams of protein by 4. You should eat a ratio of 30% protein, 55% carbohydrates, and 15% fat. So, for a 2000 calorie diet, you should eat 600 calories of protein (150 grams of protein), 300 calories of fat (33 grams of fat) and 1100 calories of carbohydrates (275 grams of carbohydrates). This is probably more calories than a woman should consume to lose weight. It is for example only.

Nutritional Habits

This area is almost completely ignored by most people. In fact, it seems we spend more money on material things than we do on supplements for our health. A good supplement program will cost at least $125 or more a month. However, it is extremely important that supplements become a routine part of your everyday routine.

The supplements that are essential are a good multi-vitamin and mineral, an antioxidant, a super immune, and one of the new anti-aging supplements. These supplements will increase your energy levels, immune system, and your metabolism rate! Currently your association has made available the supplements from Oasis Wellness. I highly recommend these supplements. People who have been using them have reported dramatic increases in natural energy, sleep improvements, weight loss, and immune system increases. It is impossible to get the proper amount of nutrients from the food we eat. This might have been possible over 100 years ago, but not today.

Exercise Habits

It is hard to exercise when you do not have the energy to go to the gym. That is why I strongly urge all my clients to use the Oasis supplements. As far as I am concerned, nutrition, supplementation, and exercise form the three legs of the wellness stool. Let's assume you are now taking the supplements and have the energy and drive to exercise.

First of all, either find a workout partner or hire a personal trainer. It is very difficult to begin working out alone. Also, the reason a personal trainer is so important, especially in the beginning, is because proper form will prevent injury and increase gains dramatically. I have seen people who have been going to the gym for years who do not look any different than they did three years ago. If you are going to exert the effort and expend the money, then you should see results. That is why a personal trainer is so valuable.

You should work out in the gym three times a week, and do some form or cardiovascular exercise three times a week. It is best to do your cardio early in the morning, before you eat your first meal. If your shift does not allow that, then do cardio when you can, preferably after you weight train. Cardio should be done gradually. Donít start out with 45 minutes on the treadmill. Work up to 45 minutes over a period of months. Start with 20 minutes at a pace that is not too taxing. You must warm up your body and get muscles working that have been dormant for years. In time, you will be sweating like crazy and burning fat like a machine!

Weight training should not last more than 45 minutes. If it does, then you are either doing too much or talking too much. I tell my clients that if they want to socialize, the gym is not the place. Get in, work out, and get out.

Your exercises should isolate the body parts. On day one, for example, you should do chest and shoulders. Day two you should rest. Day three do back and arms. Day four you should rest. Day five you should do legs. Days six and seven are rest days. Start all over again with day one. I would like to see at least three exercises per body part. Three for chest, three for shoulders, three for back, three for arms, three for quads, and two for hamstrings. This should keep you very busy when in the gym. Remember, the gym starts the process and rest between workouts is crucial.

Donít try to impress anyone with how much weight you can lift. It is not the weight, but how you lift the weight that matters. Be consistent. If you have any questions, find a personal trainer and hire him or her for at least three months. Let me say one thing in closing about exercising. Before starting any exercise program, get a physical from your doctor and tell them about your desire to start exercising. Listen to their counsel and heed their advice.

Lifestyle Habits

Ok, now that we have almost completely changed you, letís focus in on your lifestyle. Are you getting enough rest? Do you smoke? Do you drink too much? All these things will effect us in one way or another. Stress management is very important to proper health. I canít think of a more stressful job than the one you all have. Please do not ignore the signs of stress and take appropriate actions to alleviate the stress in your life.

You only have one body. Please take care of it. Your job depends on your ability to be alert and physically fit. Resolve in yourself that with the start of the new millennium you will reinvent yourself. Let the next millennium be a new start for you, both physically and emotionally.


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June 15, 2021, 1:10 pm