BY JOANNE BARRY COLON
Did you know that women lose three to five percent of muscle after age 30? The average woman gains five to seven pounds during and after menopause and the weight goes around the stomach instead of the hips and thighs.
As a Certified Personal Trainer specializing in Women’s health, I encourage clients to implement the following four tips to help maintain lean muscle.
Warm-up: Aim for 10 minutes instead of five minutes and choose dynamic movements that mirror the exercises you’re about to do, such as swinging your arms forward, lateral, diagonal and arm circles or jumping jacks, jogging around the room and jumping rope to help the blood to flow and raise your heart rate.
Eat to Fuel: Pay attention to when you feel full to avoid over eating. Be sure to drink an eight ounce glass of (warm or room temperature) water 30 minutes prior to a meal to help with digestion. Choose food rich in protein such as chicken, fish, turkey, almonds, broccoli and spinach. Eat frequently (every three to four hours), small meals and be mindful to eat your last meal three hours prior to bed time.
Weight/Strength Training: I encourage clients to properly learn how to squat and lunge as these are functional movements which keeps the large muscles in the legs strong, and will help people stay independent and live an active life longer.
To help keep your bones stronger and maintain muscle mass I recommend the following weight-bearing exercises:
• Short intervals of functional impact (Jacks, Jump Rope, High Knee Jumps)
• Squats, Reverse Lunges, Standing Calf Raises
• Seated Over Head Press, Bent Over Row, Chest Fly, Preacher Curls, Straight Arm Press Down
•Resistance Band Chops, Planks
Pump Up Intensity: As your metabolism begins to slow down due to muscle loss, it’s time to pump up your intensity. Research indicates women over 30 should be increasing their intensity. After all the heavier the load the more lean muscle mass you will build.
There is a direct correlation between your health and muscle mass, the more lean muscle you build the faster your metabolism moves, the tighter and firmer you get, which helps you reach your ideal weight and maintain it, while decreasing your risk of diabetes, heart disease, cancer and decreases your risk of falls and injury.
Please consult with your physician before starting this plan. For best results work one on one with a Certified Personal Trainer, Functional Fitness Specialist or Physical Therapist. Email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. Bring this article to Receive two FREE 30 minute Personal Training sessions on premises.