What Midlife Fitness Means To Me

Throughout my life,  fitness has taken on a few different meanings.  As a kid,  fitness was associated with the Presidential Fitness Challenge.  You remember those, right? My kids still do them at school and the mere thought gives me flashbacks.  I've always been flexible so the sit and reach was my jam!  Pullups.... nope, couldn't do one.  Climbing that rope with the bell? Absolutely not.

As I got older and started to take an interest in fashion, fitness meant more about "fittin" into skinny leg Guess jeans.  Then it was about fitting into business attire as a young professional. Now,  as midlife approaches,  I find myself fitting mostly into stretchy pants because kids, life, wine, tacos, and dang it.... they're cozy.  The thing is, getting cozy and complacent has me feeling achy and bloated.  Dietary errors that used to roll off my back now roll around my middle. 

Photo by Bruno Nascimento on Unsplash

So, here in midlife,  I'm attempting to get back in shape.  What exactly do I mean by that?  I'm not worried so much about climbing ropes to ring bells and I've given up on fitting into my high school jeans.  What midlife fitness means to me is getting strong, flexible, healthy, and balanced.

I recently did Amber Dodzweit's 2 Week Jumpstart and loved the feeling of strength and power returning to long neglected muscles.  I know I can get stronger even if midlife has some obstacles.  For starters, my abs aren't as strong as they used to be by a long shot.  Crunches, sure... but attempting full sit ups left me looking like a turtle knocked on her back!  Yoga poses I used to do easily?? Yikes!  Now, I'm proud not to fall over. Seriously, proud.  Cardio?  I only run when chased but even marching in place has me quickly winded.  I'm starting from scratch.

Where do I go from here?  

1.  Start moving more in general.  My goal in 2018 is to get a lot more steps in every single day by making a conscious effort to get 10,000 steps in more often than not.

2.  Strength training.  I want to build muscle and plan to incorporate strength training several days a week.

3.  Flexibility and balance.  In addition to yoga, I plan to add in Tai chi. 

4.  Cardiovascular fitness.  I want to be able to do 45 to 60 minute exercise DVDs on a regular basis.

Here are a few tools that I plan to use:

1.  Amber Dodzweit's 2 Week Jumpstart.  As it becomes easier, I'll investigate her other (harder) programs.

2.  Cardio workouts starting with various Walk Away The Pounds DVDs.  For midlife fitness, they are a wonderful choice for those getting started (or returning) to exercise.

3.  Balance work.  I'm considering something like this Tai Chi For Beginners.

4.  Whole Foods Nutrition.  In order to feel well in general, I'm starting 2018 with a round of the Whole 30

What about you?  What are you going to do to improve your fitness in 2018? 

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