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Fitness for Men at Forty

Getting older is not very pleasant. Sometimes it just plain sucks. As you move past your thirties and into your forties you will start noticing there are a lot of changes happening to your body - and they're not pleasant changes like when you hit puberty and started noticing girls more.

For more men it becomes painfully obvious that you are not the young man that you used to be. You have to come to grips with the fact that your late thirties and early forties is a whole new phase in life. No longer is your body naturally going to be at the same level as it was in your 20s or even early 30s, even if mentally we still have the same or greater desires to be fit and athletic.

It can be rather sobering to realize it but while your body might basically look the same as it did when you were 25 or 30, its needs have changed. Your body has started to produce much less testosterone making it more difficult for you to build muscles, your metabolism starts slowing down and you get tired easier, and your recovery / healing periods are longer. Plus you are at a greater risk for heart disease and cancer.

However before you think it is time to check into the retirement home... think again!

By this point in life you should also have the experience and hopefully the wisdom to understand and accept these changes, and then adapt by developing a smarter and more effective strategy to counteract all of these affects of getting older. In this manner we can then keep moving in the positive direction of staying healthy and fit well into our retirement years - and stave off the worst effects of aging.

The Secret of Anti-Aging

It all starts with the diet.

Shocking right? So often it all goes back to diet again. Your diet will probably be about 80% to 90% responsible for how you look and feel as you hit 40 and beyond. The other 10% to 20% will be training and exercise levels. I know a guy in his 60s, avid cyclist. Has the body of a 30 year old because he stays active, but he can't blame it all on exercise because his family is mostly vegetarian so he is, not by choice, eating pretty healthy most of the time simply because that is what his family eats.

So why is diet so important? To start, a healthy and balanced diet is the best way to make sure you are getting all the nutrients into your body. Next you need to limit things like sugar, excess fat, and carbohydrates because it will take you so much longer to burn off accumulated fat since your older body has difficulty maintaining its metabolism.

Finally diet and supplementation (multivitamins, minerals, etc) has a huge impact on our daily energy levels, sex drive, stress, depression, memory, mood, and prevention of illness and disease.

You need to take the time to really understand all the results of eating healthy sometimes versus eating like a pig all the time. That also involves making sure you are consuming the right type of supplements to help combat aging. That means having things like: A daily multivitamin, flax seed oil, whey protein, ginkgo biloba, ginseng, zinc, and l-arginine, in the cupboard to boost your internal systems.

The Right Kind of Exercise

Along with nailing down a healthy and balanced meal plan, you need to workout the correct way. Specifically that means more weight lifting and high-intensity interval training.

Why these two methods? Weight lifting is important for maintaining and even increasing lean muscle mass. Muscle mass is directly related to your metabolism. On top of that, if you incorporate more full-body exercises such as squats, deadlifts, clean and pulls, or one-arm snatches you can help increase the natural production of testosterone in your system to offset the loss from aging. You could actually end up feeling younger instead of older.

When performing cardio work, High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is a superior choice compared to regular cardio exercises because of how efficient it is at burning fat, helps increase testosterone levels, and helps exercise your heart by providing a new challenge.

No Time like the Present

As you get older it becomes more apparent that there is no time like the present. You are running out of time. There comes a point where you can't put off exercising and taking care of your diet if you truly want to live a long time and be able to enjoy the autumn years of your life instead of being confined to a scooter and dying quickly because you refused to take care of yourself. But, you need to make that choice, not because you feel like you have to, but because you've realized the kind of life you want to have and the kind of life you want to avoid.

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