***With our guest, Amy Johnston of AMY JOHNSTON FITNESS***
So a few weeks ago we asked you what you wanted more of on Mojo and Moxie. You gave us so many great ideas and we are busy working on making sure our little blog is a “go to” for everything you might want and need in this stage of your life!
Can you guess what the number ONE request was?
Mojo and Moxie – please deal with all of our questions and concerns in regards to FITNESS OVER 40!!!
Lucky for us, Danni and I have an expert we have been hitting up for fitness advice for many years! Fellow mom, longtime friend and FITNESS FANATIC Amy Johnston is a wealth of information. She is busy with her own business of training us over 40 chicks, but we managed to track her down to answer five burning fitness questions you might have as you approach middle age. So take it away Amy!
MOJO and MOXIE ask: What would you say is THE most important exercise a woman should do when she hits “middle age!”
AMY SAYS: As we hit middle age, it isn’t the exact exercises that we do that are important, but the balance we need to create with the exercises that we are doing.
My biggest advice is to find exercises that create balance in the body. For example, if you are weight training, making sure you perform both front body and back body movements. An example of this would be, to include in your workout a push-up for your chest and a row or pull up for you back.
Core stability is also very important, so performing planks over sit-up movements are beneficial in maintaining and improving spine strength.
Sit-ups should be avoided most of time, especially as we age as it puts undo pressure on the pelvic floor which could lead to problems of incontinence and if you have had children you may already be experiencing this.
MOJO and MOXIE ask: As we age it seems that the weight starts to concentrate in the middle waist area – what should we do fitness-wise to combat that?
This is a tough one because belly fat as we age is sadly due to the hormonal changes that our bodies are going through in peri and full blown menopause.
As we go through this change, the dips and valleys in hormone levels created by our body when we menstruate fade away which greatly affects our stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol is our stress hormone and it is responsible for both getting rid of fat and storing it.
Soooo, long story short, reducing stress in your life is the biggest dial mover in getting rid and avoiding belly fat. Sadly, this includes exercise. Crazy cardio sessions may want to be avoided if you are in this phase.
MOJO and MOXIE ask: What is ONE weight loss or maintenance tip you think is really effective for women over 40 – something we could easily add to our daily routine
I love this question! As we age less is more and consistency is key. The biggest dial mover and tip I give people is that lifting weights is our only fountain of youth.
Also, short intense sessions of interval training no more than 20 minutes combined with daily walking is the best way to keep that stress hormone cortisol at bay and efficiently burn fat while building muscle.
Yoga is also super beneficial in lowering stress and keeping those muscles supple. So my biggest advice is lift some weights, go for a walk and do yoga.
MOJO and MOXIE ask: Fitness Trends – any new trends for us ladies that easily get bored with their fitness routine and need to shake it up? Wake up the metabolism, or shock the body? How often should we change up our routine?
Another great one, the biggest thing to remember is we are all different with different exercise experience. Our body is unique to us, so depending on where you are at in your journey to get fit and healthy is dependent on your routine. For example, if you have only been doing cardio for a lengthy amount of time i.e. spin or running, then it is probably time to add strength training to your routine.
If you have been lifting weights with no cardio for a while and feeling stagnant, then it is a great option to try HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), or cardio interval work like running or walking up hills. There is soooo much to choose from and that’s what makes fitness fun.
My biggest rule for exercise is to find something you enjoy and try and stick with it. When you get bored or stop getting results, go try out the new studio down the street or head online to many fitness apps and trainers that are out there.
MOJO and MOXIE ask: Injury, sore joints, things that have been long term aggravating injuries often rear their ugly head when trying to stay in shape as we age. Any low impact exercise you recommend that will still give us results?
100% it is yoga! Not the crazy hot power kind, where you can’t breath from the heat and your heart is beating out of your chest. The warm, slow Hatha or Yin style yoga where you hold poses for longer in a supported position. There are many studios that have a variety of classes like this. The other great tool for this is foam rolling! If you don’t already have one, it is a must. I keep mine in my living room so I have no excuse when I am watching Netflix.
Foam rolling helps with muscle recovery and get this, it has been proven to help the look of cellulite!! One more reason to help motivate you to do it.
Sleep is another weak link with regard to feeling pain and soreness. Getting in 7-9hrs of quality sleep is crucial for recovery.
AMY’s Last Words
I think the biggest advice I can give you as we age is;
– don’t be so hard on yourself
– remember it isn’t just exercise that moves the dial (nutrition habits are 80% of this)
– hormones play a huge roll and are sometimes out of our control
– do what you love
– stay as consistent as you can
– grabbing a workout buddy always helps with motivation
– get enough sleep
– use self care to reduce stress
So there you have it! A few tidbits to get you started or keep you motivated as we sail into the BEST years of our lives! My favourite part of all of this advice is – learn to not be so hard on yourself, and to do what you love. Danni and I both enjoy different types of workouts – but in the end, it is actually doing the workout that makes the difference 🙂
Great News! If you are interested in starting a program and don’t know where to turn… Amy is starting her FALL into FITNESS (click the link) program – a program perfect for us over 40 ladies.
Towards the end of summer, Amy did a 10 day challenge that I participated in, and you may have seen snippets on our Instagram story. This workout is expanded version of that, created to keep you interested, and rev up your sluggish metabolism. This is a great program to check out!
You can also find out more about Amy on her socials:
So with the kids back in school, or off to university, time for a little self love, a little sweat and a nice glass of vino at the end of the day… She DID say do what you love, right?? 🙂
Does this count?? If you are looking for a few of my “go-to” sneaky core exercises, check out our post HERE.