Best Exercise Routines for Men Over 50
The best exercise for men over 50 is a complete body workout. Routines should center on making you strong, healthy, and independent.
Everyone regardless of age can benefit from picking up a dumbbell. But even more so for men in their 50s.
Continue scrolling to find out how to build the best routine for 50 year-olds.
How to Create Exercise Routines for Men over 50
The Importance of Exercise for Men over 50
Once you hit 30, you begin to lose 3% to 5% of your muscles every decade. Sarcopenia is the loss of muscle mass and strength mainly because of inactivity.
It's a natural part of the aging process, but it is not inevitable. Research shows that strength or resistance training could help beat sarcopenia. A strong body is key to prevent falling and help maintain an adult's independence.
An active lifestyle may also keep chronic diseases at bay. Your fitness program doesn't need to be intense to be effective. But with more physical activity come more health benefits.
The best exercise routine for men over 50 will maintain muscle mass. You don't need bulging muscles to have healthy muscles. Exercise remains the gold standard to beat the loss of muscle mass and function.
It's never too late to start taking care of your body and begin an exercise routine. Today is as good a time as any.
It Begins with Cardio (Start with the Heart)
Every 36 seconds, a person dies of heart disease in the United States, making it the number one killer.
When planning out your exercise routine, don't forget about the most important muscle—the heart.
Aerobic exercise or cardio could keep your heart healthy by lowering your risk of:
- heart disease
- type 2 diabetes
- high blood pressure
According to the American Heart Association (AHA), every 1000 steps may be connected with a lower risk of metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome is a combination of three or more risk factors that may increase your risk of a heart attack.
Squeeze in 150 minutes of aerobic exercise weekly. Don't worry if you can't get up to 150 minutes just yet especially if you're a beginner.
Break out your old bike if you enjoy biking. Jogging around your village or at a nearby park are also good examples of cardio or aerobic exercise. Doing something you enjoy will take out the “work” factor in your workout.
Like a sturdy house needs a foundation, the body needs strong muscles to tough.
Starting with muscle-strengthening workouts may help prevent injuries down the road. It may also prepare you for more intense workouts and for the different routines you'll be incorporating.
Strength exercises can help beat sarcopenia and muscle loss that comes with aging. In addition to muscle loss, older adults tend to gain weight. And with these two factors combined, you may be left with excess weight from fat.
Working out your leg and hip muscles may also prevent you from falling. Staying strong throughout your golden years may keep you from becoming frail and dependent on others. It could also be easier to perform tasks like lugging groceries or walking up the stairs.
If you're just starting out and how no experience with exercise, work out with a trainer. A trainer will teach you the correct forms and start you out with the right load.
The gym may also have a cable machine, ideal for those that want to start weight training but have never wielded a barbell or dumbbell. Despite their intimidating appearance, cable machines are safe and easier for beginners.
If you prefer working out alone at home, there are many options available to you. Some types of yoga are also ideal for beginners and may build strength and flexibility at the same time.
Do muscle-building workouts twice a week, making sure to hit different muscle groups each time. And when starting out, keep in mind that it's more important to exercise with the correct form than with a heavy load.
Train Your Balance and Flexibility
What else protects you from falls and injuries? Balance training is especially vital for older adults and forms part of the best exercise regimens for men over 50.
Some strength-building workouts can help you develop balance, but here are other easy workouts that focus on balance:
- tai chi
- walking a line from heel to toe
- standing on a single foot
Hold on to something to keep you stable like a table or the back of a chair. If you feel unsteady, ask your doctor for recommendations or train with a specialist.
Improving your flexibility may also help protect you from falls and injuries. Improving your range of motion through flexibility exercises may also help daily tasks easier.
Stretching can also help loosen tight muscles and prepare them for all types of activities including working out. Like how we lose muscle when we're inactive, our muscles also become shorter when we don't stretch.
Unlike weight training, try to do flexibility or stretching exercises daily. But if you have a current condition, you may want to consult with your doctor first.
Yoga may help you work on your balance and flexibility. But simple tasks like stretching your back, ankles, or hamstrings can improve your flexibility.
Exercise Tips for Men over 50
Proper exercise and strong muscles can prevent you from getting injured. However, exercising with an incorrect posture may injure you.
Below are other tips to help you make the most of your sessions. Before you come out of the gym stronger and sturdier, you also need to learn how to be safe when working out.
1. Form over Speed
Executing with proper form will make sure you're hitting the correct muscles. Doing reps are all about quality, not quantity (speed). The correct form will also prevent injuries.
2. Form over Load
You may not be able to work out with 20kg weights when you start out. Begin with a load that feels a bit tough, but you can still execute with the correct form.
3. Hit All Muscle Groups
A well-rounded fitness routine will balance workouts for all muscles. If you like weight training, dedicate one day to each muscle group. But sports like swimming or working out with battle ropes help you hit multiple muscles at once.
4. Join Classes
Joining a class with a licensed or professional trainer may help you work out safely and effectively. The sense of community or being surrounded by your peers may also motivate you to exercise regularly.
5. Do Workouts or Sports That You Enjoy
To make exercise feel less tiring and less of a chore, participate in a physical sport or activity that you like. Hike with your pals on the weekends, or do some laps in the pool. However, you choose to exercise, just move, move, move!
Check out this video on what you can eat before and after your sessions to make the most of your workout:
Don't pressure yourself to do well on your first day at the gym. It's natural to struggle in the beginning, but soon you will feel stronger and your muscles will be able to bear more.
Make simple lifestyle choices like choosing to take the stairs instead of the elevator. Take the longer route to work if you're walking. A bike may be a healthier lifestyle choice than a car. These minor choices accumulate and may make you healthier over time.
There's no day like today to start a new fitness regimen.
Have you started planning the best workout routine for you? Do you want tips on how to stick to your fitness programs? Talk to us in the comments section below!
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