Updated: Apr 19, 2021
If you are struggling with weight gain over 50, then you are in the right spot. I can offer you hope and viable solutions to help you find your version of success.
I can reassure you that no matter what your age, you can lose weight and get fit by using the combination of these 5 strategies. Please keep in mind, that no ONE thing is going to get you to the finish line. It is the combination of habits combined- done consistently that will produce results.
One of the biggest mistakes I see women make is approaching weight loss and fitness like they did in their 20’s or 30’s.
Your body has changed, and so should your approach
Going on another restrictive diet isn't going to work OR making too many changes at once. This just sets you up for failure, especially if you are over 50. What truly works? Creating lifestyle changes, along with a holistic approach: Having more balance with nutrition, exercise and, stress management.
But to get you started, I have zeroed in on my Top 5 most powerful tips.
#1 Modified HIIT
YOU BET, even for us women over 50. High-intensity interval training is a win-win for anyone interested in getting fit and losing weight, but it is especially great for women over 50. HIIT burns a ton of calories in a shorter period and you have the bonus of cardio built in.
I created a modified version of HIIT that is perfect for women who are short on time but want a great workout.
Here is an example: Focusing on major muscle groups; make the following moves back-to-back for 20 to 30 seconds, followed by a 30 second cardio burst such as skaters, jog in place ,etc. Do 2-3 sets x’s 3 a week.
Modified pushups- (angled against a countertop or on your knees)
Bonus: This workout gives you the power of EPOC; Post-exercise oxygen consumption. Your body will burn extra calories long after you finish, which isn’t the case with a cardio workout.
#2 Get enough protein
If you are eating one or two servings of protein a day, that’s only enough to do basic body repair, it will not be enough to build lean muscle and boost your metabolism. To burn more calories at rest, you need to have more muscle; to develop and repair muscle, you need enough protein to do the job and your intake needs to be consistent. Keep in mind that protein is rarely stored as fat, unlike the other nutrients in your food.
Let me break it down for you so that it isn’t complicated. Aim for 20-25 grams of protein x 4 meals. If you are a heavy exerciser or a bigger person, you would add in more.
#3 Don't wait until you are hungry, at least not at first
This seems counterintuitive, but many women are famous for going hours without eating and skipping meals to save calories. It doesn’t take long for your body to adapt and slow down the caloric burn. This contributes to weight gain and loss of muscle. Your metabolism isn't broken; it just needs to be stimulated.
Eating at regular intervals is like throwing a log on the fire, stoking your metabolism. When you start to eat at regular intervals, your body will signal hunger. Start leaning more into protein-rich foods, adding in more veggies, several healthy fats, and complex carbs. If you tend to graze, nip that in the bud.
#4 Water, Water Everywhere
For many, this is a no-brainer. You drink water without an issue; for many others, it is a real issue.
Women tell me they drink plenty of water; they keep a glass by their side. I ask them; How many times do you re-fill your glass? If you aren't tracking your water re-fills, more than likely, you are short-changed.
Let's talk about science; Without enough water, you'll have difficulty building muscle and losing fat because, without enough water, our body cannot metabolize stored fat or carbohydrates. Drinking enough water is essential for burning off fat from foods and drinks and stored fat. If you get around 8 cups a day, you are fine. If you add in a couple of hydrating herbal teas, those will count towards your daily intake.
#5 Intermittent fasting or Restricted eating
IF is a great tool to incorporate once or twice into your week, not only for fat loss but for overall health. Problems can arise when women try to starve for long periods or try fasting in a vacuum. If you aren't changing the way you eat or exercise, fasting probably won't be helpful.
For most women, a doable, easy fast is about 16 to 18 hours which is about the time to tap into the fat-burning zone without putting too much stress on their system. Here's an example: Eat dinner around 5:30 and don't eat again until the next day at 12:30. Or pick 2-3 days a week and limit the hours you eat, such as only eating from 8 a.m. to 3 or 4 p.m. You can choose whatever hours work best for you and build this into your weekly routine.
The truth is that although weight loss seems harder to achieve after we hit 50, it really isn't, it's just different. Once you know what to do and how to do it, your weight loss and fitness journey will be doable.
My online 12 week Nutrition program is for YOU if you want to eat better, lose weight, and take control of your health--------once and for all.
In other works, this IS for you if you want to:
Lose weight and body fat (without another diet)
Transform your relationship with food ( no more guilt or shame)
Have more energy for the things you love (bring on the adventure!)
Learn a sustainable nutrition approach that fits OUR lifestyle (and get you results that last)
I'll be with you every step of the way, providing the guidance, support, and encouragement you need to make a life--changing transformation.
If you're ready to lose the weight you haven't been able to shed for years, and find new confidence in your body....
I'm ready to help.
Go to www.coachlesslee.com to schedule your Complimentary "Ditch the Diet" strategy session.
Medical News Today
Jillian Kubal MS, RD