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The Workout Imperative: An Exercise Program For 50 And Beyond

Exercising and keeping fit is imperative to your long term health. There are a number of studies that indicate that a program of good nutrition and exercise will help stave off the ravages of aging.

A number of body elements begin to diminish with age; muscle size and strength, our oxygen transport capacity, bone density, flexibility and our response to exercise.

This means that we have to be smarter in our workout regimen, we have to adapt our program to our present capacity and fitness requirements.

In order to keep our oxygen capacity and usage high, we have to incorporate more aerobic exercises into our weight lifting routine.

We still have to strength train, but we should add some high rep/lower weight sets as they tend to be more aerobic.

Aerobic versus Anaerobic:

Aerobic exercises are those where the principal energy source is the oxygen we breathe. Aerobics involve longer exercise periods.

Typical aerobic sports are distance running, swimming, bicycling, jumping rope and karate. Aerobic exercises tend to increase our efficient use of oxygen and oxygen capacity.

Anaerobic are short duration exercises that rely upon strength and agility, such as; power-lifting, push-ups, pull-ups and resistance training.

Typical anaerobic sports are; Olympic weight lifting, football (American), sprinting, shot-put and hammer-throw.

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When we are young with our strength at its peak, our body functions are most efficient. Our glands are producing all our hormone requirements, our metabolisms are in high gear and our cardiovascular system is at 100%. As we age, these bodily functions begin to slow down.

To compensate, we have to adapt our exercise and nutrition programs to slow down the disintegration and meet our changing needs.

An Exercise Program Strength Training - Lifting weights is still very important for muscle development and density.

Maximum weights should be used one day per week with the other days routines focused more on moderate weights with high repetitions.

You might want to consider using weight loaded machines instead of as many free weights because machine exercises have less impact on the joints. Injured joints tend to become arthritic. Check out the ultimate beginner weight lifting routine for more details.

Aerobics - At least one hour should be spent on machines; treadmill, elliptical, stair-climber and stationary bicycle. Moderate speeds, workloads and resistance should be used.

If the weather is good, running, jogging, bicycling or sports walking may be substituted for the machines.

The routine should follow a regular schedule like:

Monday - Heavy Day using maximum weights in all lifts.
Tuesday - Aerobics Day.
Wednesday - Strength training on machines, moderate weights, high reps.
Thursday - Aerobics Day.
Friday - Strength training on machines, moderate weights, high reps.
Saturday and Sunday - Rest

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Monday is the best for your heavy day because your body has rested for two days and your strength and energy levels will be high.

Aerobic sports like tennis or martial arts may also be performed in addition to other aerobic exercises.

Diet

Our metabolism slows down as we age. Our nutritional requirements are still high because of our activity, but our ability to absorb proteins is greatly diminished. Changing fitness program exercise and dietary needs can help you in maintaining a balanced lifestyle.

We should consider dietary supplements, particularly those that assist with protein assimilation.

We should be eating smaller quantities of nutritionally balanced foods. Protein should be about twenty percent of the calories consumed, with complex carbohydrates being forty percent and fats and fibers making up the balance.

Our glands are also producing fewer hormones, so we should consider augmenting that production as well.

Your family medical practitioner can advise you or refer you to a specialist who can prescribe a program of natural hormone replacement or supplementation.

One national medical group that features a very muscular, youthful looking 65 year old as their poster-boy, uses hormone therapy to stop and reverse aging.

It is their contention that medically supervised doses of human growth hormone (HGH and testosterone are healthy after you body slows or stops production of these items on its own.

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