Did you know that middle-aged spread is a very real phenomenon? As we age, changes in our bodies and lifestyles make it more challenging to lose weight. When you reach your 50s, it may even seem impossible.
You may, however, overcome those difficulties by understanding the factors that make our bodies hold on to excess weight as we age.
Declining Muscle Mass
Turning fifty brings an increase in wisdom and self-confidence for most people. Many people actually welcome these changes. But consider the less welcome changes—the average person loses 10% of their muscle mass by this age.
This problematic change occurs because muscle burns more calories at rest than fat does. Therefore, a higher muscle-to-fat ratio leads to a faster metabolism and more efficient fat loss.
To combat this decline, you must incorporate strength training into your workout sessions. You need to include cardiovascular exercise to burn calories, but only strength training can build muscles and fight the flab.
You should also make a point of staying active to maintain muscle mass.
Your Metabolism Slows
Your metabolism represents the rate at which your body burns calories to produce energy when at rest. Unfortunately, the average American’s metabolism slows around 2% every ten years or so. At first, the change isn’t noticeable, but by your fiftieth birthday, you’ll be aware that something’s changed.
You notice that it appears easier to pick up weight, even if you try to curb your cheat meals. You might even see a little tummy or excess flab that you would never have had in your twenties.
Metabolism typically slows because of a decrease in muscle mass. As mentioned above, strength training can offset this decline. Another important aspect includes ensuring that you eat adequate amounts of protein.
Your Sleep Patterns Change
As we age, we require slightly less sleep. Our changing physiology may also make sleep more elusive. As a result, we’re more likely to battle heartburn, aches and pains, and tension as we grow older.
These factors all make it harder to fall asleep. The downside to this means we eat more recklessly when we feel sleep deprived. You may, therefore, gain weight just because you do not get a good night’s sleep.
You can turn things around by sticking to a strict sleeping schedule and practicing good sleep hygiene. Set a bedtime and waking time and stick to each religiously. If you wish to go out late one night, you can do that, but get up at the usual time the next day.
Getting your body into this rhythm remains your best defense against sleep deprivation. Create a routine around bedtime by:
- Switching off electronic devices an hour before you want to sleep
- Sitting quietly doing something relaxing like reading just before bedtime
- Having a relaxing bath or shower about an hour before you want to sleep
- Ensuring that your bedroom stays dark, comfortable, and moderately cool
Would you like assistance in losing weight after 50? Call MediPlan Diet Services at (901) 362-7546 today and take the first step. Our team of weight loss specialists will create a program tailored to your needs and goals.