JEAN-CLAUDE’S FITNESS FIX
Act your AGE!
Jean-Claude tells you how best to exercise when you’re in your 40s
Your forties is still a time when you can make big improvements to your strength and fitness levels, but you’ll have to work at it! Muscle Bone mass start to decline more this decade – it’s now a case of use it or lose it. It also gets harder to maintain your peak cardiovascular fitness, but you can still keep yourself in impressive shape, and look and feel younger than you actually are. In fact, many women make their most significant fitness progress when they get into their forties, as they realise that what they bank now will have a huge impact later in life.
This is the time when you start to see a bigdifference between the fit and the unfit. And you’ll feel the difference too. The fit will still feel young and vibrant, while those who haven’t kept themselves in shape will probably start to feel the odd ache, pain or injury niggle, which can make you move less freely and feel older than your years – something we all want to avoid.
Jean-Claude Van Damme Workout Routine Photo Gallery
WORK ON STRENGTH
It’s known that muscle and bone mass starts to dip by your late thirties and this continues into your forties if you don’t keep up a regular workout schedule that includes resistance training. Studies have shown that people who are physically inactive can lose as much as three to five per cent of their muscle mass per decade after the age of thirty. So now is the time to get strong, challenge your body, get in the gym and get lifting! Not only will the muscle that you retain or develop boost your metabolism, but the workouts themselves will torch calories – both of which will help to keep your health and weight in check and ward off any serious illnesses. Don’t forget to warm up and cool down carefully and do regular stretching too.
IT’S NOT TOO LATE
If you’ve previously been fit. but fallen off the wagon, don’t worry, your body will remember what it’s done and get into the groove again.By doing weight-bearing exercise at least three times per week, particularly resistance training, you’ll keep your bones strong, your joints stable, and will maintain and maybe increase your muscle mass if you work hard at it. It’s also important to stay flexible. Concentrate on the trio of strength, flexibility and cardiovascular fitness to reach top form.Personal trainer Jean-Claude Vacassin owns W10 Performance gym in West London. He has advised athletes, sports brands and film companies, as well as working in nutrition, functional medicine and rehabilitation. Visit w10 performance gym.com.
TIPS FOR YOUR 40s
HIT THE WEIGHTS
I’m not talking high-octane circuit training with questionable form here. Now it’s about quality strength training, done in good form, working your joints through their full range of movement. Try to do two or three 45-60-minute full-body resistance-training sessions each week. This should give you all you need to keep strong.
DO SOME YOGA
Mobility and flexibility are also really important to maintain, and will underpin everything else. We all have different areas of our body that get tight and we need to focus on, but one or two weekly yoga sessions should do the trick. And if you can’t make a yoga class, add some mobility work and stretching at the beginning and end of your gym workouts.
Unless you have specific fitness goals, such as running a 10K race or competing in a triathlon, you don’t need to pound the roads to stay cardiovascularly fit, especially if you’re doing resistance training three times a week. I’m a big fan of regular brisk walking. It’s accessible, joint friendly, and a great de-stressor. Aim To do a thirty-minute walk every day.
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