9 Best Exercises For Women Over 40

Best Exercises For Women Over 40
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As you age, you start to feel slower and less energetic as compared to when you were younger. You don’t have to necessarily be 60 or 70 to feel this kind of change in your body. 

But while age may play a huge role in your performance, how you maintain and take care of your body can make all the difference. For example, a 40-year old who eats healthily and engages in physical activity regularly is more fit compared to that of a 25-year old who snacks junk food and sits on the couch all day.

So yes, being physically fit and healthy depends on a person’s discipline and responsibility with their body. That being said, you can imagine how combining a healthy diet and exercise can counteract the side effects of aging such as improving heart health, maintaining stronger bones, increasing flexibility, and maintaining a sharp mind.

To women, to be able to look younger than your age, keep walking in those high heels, and walk with posture and grace, staying fit is something that should be a priority to you. 

Aging and exercise

When your age starts to go up, several changes occur to your body. By the time you reach 40, your muscle mass can decrease by three to five percent, this will keep increasing as you age. 

Muscles are highly important when doing activities, not only in sports or activities but to your day-to-day routines as well. This is because having good muscle mass means better strength and balance; if it is not maintained, you can become less independent than you used to.

However, your physical capability is not the only thing that is affected by aging but your mental health as well. When you age and you don’t have an active lifestyle, you can have a higher risk of developing memory loss or dementia.

To even help you further understand the importance of exercise for aging people, here are some key or main benefits of staying physically active and healthy:

Longer life and improved quality of living

Normally, people who age become more grumpy and moody this is commonly due to old people being less patient and easily irritated by the littlest of things. 

Studies show that people who are aged but engages in exercise have better moods and have better psychological mindsets. Old people who are physically active are also more independent which helps them experience life more due to better and maintaining mobility.

Better stability and balance

Falling and sliding are common occurrences with older people. Fortunately, this can easily be solved by regular exercise. Accidents such as falling are highly dangerous not only for older people but for all ages as well, this is because it can lead to broken bones or much worse.

Better function and healing

Having regular exercise can help your body have faster, fight off infection, and recover faster from illness and injury. 

Reduced risk of chronic conditions and diseases

Engaging regularly in exercise can help shield and reduce your chances of acquiring chronic diseases such as diabetes, stroke, cancer, and heart diseases.

Exercises for women over 40

Now that you have understood why it is essential to maintain regular exercise even as you age, you should consider indulging or creating your own workout. 

To give you an idea of what exercises are ideal for this type of age range, here are some exercises and activities that you should consider doing:

1. Yoga

What makes yoga a great exercise option for those who are over forty is because it is more than improving your physical body. Yoga also helps you to improve mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. In short, if you want a practice that can do it all, yoga is the answer.

When it comes to physical aspects. Yoga can help you in improving flexibility and balance, toning your muscles, and increasing stamina and strength. As for your emotional and mental well-being, yoga can reduce depression, stress, fatigue, and anxiety. Your spiritual health is elevated by yoga as it helps you to reconnect with yourself.

However, there’s more, that’s right, yoga still has so much to offer. This is because yoga has the capability to prevent and manage diseases, injuries, and allergies, such as, depression, diabetes, arthritis, epilepsy, obesity, and multiple sclerosis, to name a few.

2. Running/Jogging

Running is one of the simplest ways to get your body in condition, right next to walking. Running, despite how simple it is, can do a multitude of health benefits to your body. And you don’t even need to be fast to gain from these benefits, even a simple jog would suffice. 

One of the many reasons why you should consider running into your routine is because it is an activity that is highly inclusive. This means no matter what age, gender, or schedule you might have, running is something that is easy to do and add to your daily routine.

As mentioned before, running has a lot of benefits. The most important one for you is that it improves your overall health. As aging is one of the most well-known and unavoidable causes for health deterioration, running can help you decrease and reduce the side effects of aging by improving various areas of your health.

As a cardio activity, running can help you lose weight which can prevent and reduce obesity, high levels of cholesterol, and blood pressure. 

Running also trains and strengthens your heart by improving the flow of oxygen and and blood to your body, this means the various organs of your body are capable of performing well and at maximum.

Other benefits of running that you’ll find helpful to your aging state is that it helps you boost your energy, it can help prevent or reduce neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s while improving other cognitive functions, and it can help you to socialize and feel more of the community by going outside and meeting other people.

3. Squats

Squats are considered by many trainers and athletes to be an important part of their training program and routine. Although squats are very difficult especially when you have only started to work out, many say it is worth the pain and intensity as it comes with numerous benefits.

To start off, as you age, your muscle mass decreases, well squats can help you take care of that as it is effective in building muscles especially in your lower body areas such as your calves, quadriceps, and hamstrings. Squats can create or make an anabolic environment which means it can help promote the gaining of muscle mass.

In addition to preventing a lot of loss in muscle mass, squats can also help you maintain a firm and toned body as it tests your core, legs, and booty. Squats primarily focus on the glutes and thigh muscles but it still puts some stress on your core which can help it maintain tone and firmness. This is great news for you ladies as squats can help you age with grace.

Squats can also help your joints get stronger. Often people who age find pain or numbing in the areas on the joints. Squats help promote stronger joints by engaging and training those areas such as the hips, ankles, and knees.

Lastly, squats are convenient as you can do them anywhere when you have free time. Squats don’t necessarily require any equipment in order to do them, just make sure that you can move around with your clothes.

4. Planks

Planks are a well-known workout for improving your core. This is why most models and athletes do planks in order to achieve that toned and firm core; so what does this have to do  with your aging self? 

To begin with, improving your core does not only mean toning and firming your body. No. Improvement of your core includes, muscle building, stability, mobility, flexibility, and posture.

Executing planks are very simple, but staying in the plank position for a few minutes is what makes them challenging. However, the payback is worth the challenge. 

For one, planks make use of several muscles, this means multiple muscles are being trained and getting exercised when you plank, such as your abs, legs, back, neck, shoulders, and arms. 

This is why planks are done by those who are experiencing back pain and bad posture, it’s because planks exercise your shoulders and lower back to stay in an upright or neutral position which can promote better posture.

Planks can help improve, f;exibility, stability, and mobility as well. Planks can help you become more flexible by stretching both your hamstrings and legs.

As for mobility and stability, planks can help in those areas through strengthening your core, this is because when you have a strong core, you have more control over your body that can make it easy for you to move it around.

5. Walking

You might have heard or read this somewhere before, that walking is one of the most rewarding yet simplest activities that you can do. If you are more than 40 years old, walking may be the only workout that you should never miss out on. 

Walking is something that a lot of people do daily, which could be the reason why most people often overlook it as an activity. But this is what makes walking as inclusive and amazing at the same time because it is a low impact or level exercise which means the majority of people can do it.

This should be why it shouldn’t be a mystery why older people often use walking as their daily exercise. But what makes walking so impressive? This is due to walking being packed with many benefits. 

For one, walking can improve both your pulmonary and cardiovascular health, this means your heart and lungs are healthy leading to a lesser or reduced chance of heart diseases and stroke.

Walking can also help you keep your weight and calories in check. Although walking is not as intense as other workouts it can still help you burn calories, that can help reduce your cholesterol levels, high blood pressure, diabetes, and chances of obesity.

The highlight of this activity for older people however is that walking can promote stronger bone health, endurance, balance, and strength. In short, walking can make you move as you want without you having to worry about injuries..

6. Ball room

What is something that is fun but you can still enjoy in your forties? Why ballroom dancing of course! Ballroom dancing is a fun activity that aged people often indulge in. Although they may not be aware of it, ballroom dancing is not only fun but comes with some health benefits as well. 

Think of it this way, ballroom dancing is like a workout but with music and is more fun. Ballroom dancing can help you build-up cardio and even strengthen and tone your muscles without you even knowing it. 

This is mainly due to the dance making you use your whole body and the movements help you burn a lot of calories. Depending on the intensity and type of ballroom dance that you are doing, you can burn around 350 to 700 calories in just an hour. 

In addition to its health benefits, this is one of the many recommended exercises for women over 40 because even at your age, ballroom dancing can help you socialize as it makes you interact with other people.

7. Zumba

This activity belongs to the exercises for women over 40. Zumba is a fun activity that you can do in your forties that packs a lot of benefits. The best thing about engaging in Zumba is that when you’re too occupied with enjoying it, you don’t realize you’re doing a lot of favors to your body.

 Zumba is an activity that can be done by a lot of people no matter what age you are, this is why you’ll often find Moms in Zumba classes; other than exercising, they are able to bond with other Moms. 

In short, Zumba helps you to be fit, socialize, and enjoy life. So what benefits does Zumba have to offer? The main benefits that you can get from Zumba are weight loss, improved mobility, balance, flexibility, and endurance.

On average, a 60-minute workout can help you burn as much as 350 calories, which if you compare, is a lot more than cardio and kickboxing. This still depends on the intensity of your session though, the more intense your Zumba classes are the more calories you’re bound to burn. 

This can lead you to have better weight management and cardiovascular health thus, reduced chances of getting stroke, heart diseases, and obesity which are prevalent for aging people.

Zumba can also help you maintain a firmed and toned body. Since, zumba makes use of your whole body, you can expect yourself to get toned and firm, so even as you age, you won’t have to worry about your skin sagging and becoming lumpy. Just make sure that you exercise on a regular basis.

8. Aerobics

For medical professionals, engaging in aerobic exercises is considered a wise decision for those who want a healthy lifestyle and is often encouraged for older people. 

Aerobic exercises help improve your overall health because it exercises and improves your lungs, heart, and flow of blood in your body. When your heart and lungs are often exercised, the oxygen in your blood increases which promotes blood flow. 

When this occurs, various organs and muscles can increase in performance and function, such as metabolism.

In addition to this, your body undergoes improvement with every training session that you undergo, for example, without noticing it, you may be more mobile, flexible, balanced, and stronger as compared to before you started doing aerobic exercises.

Other than your physical health, aerobics can also have some impact with your mental and emotional state. Regularly doing aerobics can encourage your body to release more endorphins which are considered to be a natural painkiller.

So basically, aerobics can help you maintain your body and mind even as you grow old. It also prevents and reduces your chances of obtaining health risks, illnesses, and diseases by improving your immune system and health.

9. Tai chi

If you are forty years old or beyond that, Tai chi is an activity worth considering. This is due to Tai chi being a gentle yet effective exercise. Tai chi closely resembles that of martial arts but consists of more deep breaths and slower movements. Another reason why this is a recommended activity for older people is because it impacts both physical, mental, and emotional aspects.

Despite being a slow-paced exercise, Tai chi is still considered a cardio activity. This is because tai chi can still increase and train your heart and lungs.

Tai chi can also help you gain strength and flexibility. When you age, your movements can become restricted and loss of muscle mass can make you weaker. 

Tai chi helps you maintain strength not only in muscles but on the joints as well, when you keep on moving, the muscles in your body help promote blood pump, this prevents various organs and body parts from declining in performance. 

The same goes with flexibility, when you keep on moving your body in various motions regularly, it can help maintain flexibility and mobility.

Conclusion

Although aging is something that no one can avoid, it doesn’t mean that you should just accept the idea of getting old and having an inactive lifestyle because you are not as fit as you once were.

Exercising and doing various activities can help your body counteract the side effects of aging which can help you enjoy more of life.

It can help you maintain mobility, strength, balance, and endurance which means you can still do the things that you love, no matter what age you are. It’s all about having the right mindset and goal.

Article by:

Francine Adan

Francine Adan

My name is Francine and I write for Sprout Origin. Writing is something that I have always enjoyed doing, but it gives me more drive when I am able to use it to help others. I love improving old skills and learning new ones. I often use my free time traveling, filming, and engaging in photography.
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