Why Healthy People Over 40 Need Plenty of Sleep

Why Healthy People Over 40 Need Plenty of Sleep

Optimal healthy sleep pattern are vitally important to our mental and physical health as we get older. Good sleep helps to lower blood pressure, wards off depression, improves long term memory, and helps with weight loss and obesity. Consistent sleep also helps repair damaged cells, builds muscle, and improves your sex drive.

Is it true that humans need less sleep as we get older? Yes and no. According to the sleep foundation toddlers need between 9 and 16 hours of sleep. Teenagers need 8 to 10 hours. As an adult either approaching 40 or older your 7 to 9 hours seems like the blink of an eye in comparison. The best rule of thumb is to shoot for 8 hours, and stay consistent.

Some individuals profess to be able to function on 5 or even 4 hours of sleep. I wonder about the viability of such an extreme deficit. Issues such as hypertension, mood disorders, and inflammation in your body are all improved by proper sleep.

This topic is personally important to me. My own experience with improving the quality of my sleep, and my night time sleep routine have yielded surprising results. That’s why the month of May is dedicated to SLEEP.

When I first started working with my health and nutrition coach the first thing she did was to have me journal about my sleep patterns and my bed time routine. What she uncovered for me was only surpassed by the positive effects of following her advice. I lost weight, lowered my blood pressure, and I even got a little boost in my testosterone production.

If you’re struggling with depression, mid day energy crashes, obesity, or high blood pressure, you might want to take a look at your sleep patterns. Too often people end up on too much caffeine, sleeping pills, anti-inflammatories, antidepressants, and other high powered medications, when all they have to really do is change some fundamental habits.

In the weeks to come I’ll be posting information about what good sleep is and how to get it. Please leave your information on the contact form for up to date information on sleep, and other health related topics.

 

 

 

 

Kill Your Heroes – Fitness Beyond 40

Kill Your Heroes – Fitness Beyond 40

All pumped to get fit after March Madness? Maybe you watched all the Nike, and Gatorade ads and somehow saw yourself sprinting and power-lifting your way into that cool new bathing suit. Do you feel ready to get into the gym way and get shredded for the summer? Awesome! There’s nothing better than riding a wave of inspiration. You never know how far it will take you. You’re going to push yourself to the max every single day until you reach your fitness goals. Before you get pumping and running, read this first, and get ready to take your fitness beyond 40.

Who hasn’t wanted to be like Mike, at one time or another? The music, the triumph, the fist pumping, what a great athlete to inspire you. Right? If he can do it, why can’t you? Between watching Oregon and North Carolina going at it to the bitter end, and the Michael Jordan theme playing in your head, you’re officially inspired. Hurray! Nothing will stop you. Maybe you haven’t exercised in months, but you’re inspired. You set your alarm clock for 5 AM. Hell or high water, you’re going on a 5 mile run before work.

The next morning, your alarm goes off. Ding – ding! Lebron James has got nothing on you. You’ve been inspired by your heroes to be just like them! If you’re not too out of shape, maybe you survive your 5 mile run the first day. If you’re not too sore the following day, you hit it again. You keep pushing yourself to the max despite soreness, and time constraints of an ambitious workout regimen to an already busy schedule. If you haven’t injured yourself from overexertion, like many people, your life may get in the way. Hitting it hard everyday, like a pro athlete, for a heavy duty workout could take a big chunk out of your schedule. Events and obligations can stand in the way, and eventually you lose your steam. No more running , with the theme playing in your ears. No more inspiration. No more bathing suit. All your left with his a feeling of failure. Sound familiar?

Inspiring advertising starring your favorite sports figures can set you up to fail

First of all, it’s not your fault. All those Nike, and Gatorade commercials with your favorite heroes are designed to do one thing – inspire you. Inspire you to do what? Buy a ton of shit that you don’t need in order to be healthy and look good, of course. By some estimates sporting gear like running shoes, sports drinks, and workout apparel earned 65 billion dollars in 2015. That does not include bicycles and fishing boats, etc. That’s another 30 billion dollars. When this amount of dollars are at stake you can bet that there will be a lot of clever advertising directed at you ; the consumer. The whole idea of this advertising is to make you feel like you’re a loser unless you buy whatever they’re selling. Don’t play the advertiser’s game. It’s great to be inspired. It’s even greater to be smart at your efforts toward your fitness goals. Here are a few tips designed to keep you focused on your fitness goals after 40.

Start with you

No matter how high you aspire to reach with your fitness goals, always begin with where you are at the moment. If you haven’t worked out in a while, start slow. If you were a star athlete in college, and you haven’t been consistent regarding your exercise routine, then address your current position. Don’t let your ego stand in the way of success. Begin again. Warm up your joints and take it slow. Injuries after 40 can be much more serious than you imagine. Pros can take several months off for surgeries and physical therapy with the best doctors and trainers in the world. You on the other hand have to go to work tomorrow. Can you take time off from work for orthopedic surgery and recovery time? Probably not.

No doubt you’ve got some time limitations. Work, family, maybe a business on the side – it doesn’t make a difference. Don’t think you need several hours a day to get into great shape. With a little planning, you can always find enough time to do some training. You can’t afford not to make the time. Why? Because if you don’t make time to exercise then you’d better get ready to get old before your time. How does that sound? Don’t worry, you can reach your fitness goals without busting your ass, or breaking the bank, and all within a short time expenditure everyday. What’s the secret?

Consistency over Intensity

Professional athletes do very intense workouts because they have to do it. It’s their job, and they are well paid to put in the many hours on the track, in the gym, and at the arena. You’ve always got time during the day to boost your metabolism for at least 20 minutes 5 to 6 days a week. At the moment, if you can do only one push up then get up every morning and do your push up. Soon you’ll be doing two. Then two turns into five. Five turns into twenty. Those push ups are your personal Be Like Mike moments. Before you know it you’ll be cranking out push ups, body weight squats, and pull ups like a champ. Remember consistency beats intensity. How does this work?

  1. Consistency builds strong habits. It’s a lot easier to build the habit of exercising if the workouts are quick. Short time equals less hassles. Less hassles equals less excuses. Less excuses equals a strong habit.
  2. Consistency builds momentum. When you do your twenty minute exercise routine, your body is building momentum. It’s going to start craving those push ups, and evening walks or whatever works for your present level of fitness. It will start to feel good, and when that starts to happen, you’ll begin to make more time for training.
  3. Consistent exercise burns fat. Your body has natural intelligence. After a short time of consistent daily training your body is going to start burning off some of that muffin top you’ve got going on. I’ve seen people burn themselves out on the track by being too intense and inconsistent. They never lose the weight and think that somehow they’re a “bad” person or incapable of good health. Nothing could be further from the truth.
  4. Consistent training builds a healthy mind. Studies have shown that regular exercise keeps your brain firing on all cylinders.

Keep in mind, that the best tips I can give you without knowing about your situation directly, is to start slow and be kind to yourself. If you feel silly because you think that you should be further along with your exercise routine, just remember, your goal is raise your metabolism for a short time every single day with a couple days rest. That’s it. Pushing yourself too hard is not going to help. Beating yourself up is going to help you even less.

I can go into greater detail once I get to know you. What are your fitness goals. Perhaps you’ve got particular challenges that you’ve overcome or maybe you have some great tips of your own. I’d love to hear from you contact me here: