My scrolling time is divided equally between art/design and fitness/workouts. I often find myself chuckling at the Instagrammers that claim the reason they look so fit is because they eat ‘clean’ and ‘never miss a Monday’. Um sure but also? You’re 23. Your metabolism is set to: MAX. And don’t get me started on ‘clean eating’. Are you saying my saucy dinner is dirty? Ugh.
But I also think back at what I was like in my 20s. I used to run, swim and bike, before I even got to work. PLUS I wore high heels all day, ate Hint ‘o’ Lime Tostitos like it was my job and ran any triathlon/fun run I wanted to. It was ridiculous. But I’m no longer that person. I’m a 43 year old athlete with a cluster-eff of injuries that need constant maintenance. I haven’t “sprung” out of bed since the late ’80s! I also often “miss a Monday” workout because I’m still not recovered from the previous Friday!
But I’m doing ok and I’m grateful for the gift of movement in my life. So here are the 3 tips I swear by that keep me upright and moving in a forward direction (most days):
1. I track my workouts for load and volume – gone are the days of working out whenever and however. I am militant about the when and how: I still lift heavy but never back-to-back days. Heavy workouts are balanced with 2-3 days of either a swim, a walk or nothing. I remember an active recovery day being a long, slow run. Not on these old lady feet anymore! A little bit of muscle soreness is ok. If I feel it in my joints or I’m walking weird, I wait. Active recovery is actually just active recovery.
2. My shoes have to be perfect – I’ve often been guilty of buying cute sneakers that wreck my feet. Did you know that the fat pads in your heels can thin as you age? As if losing collagen under your eyes wasn’t bad enough, now I’m also worrying about this. Now I have sport specific sneakers that have high cushion and good stability. These Brooks Levitate are my current faves for walking/running plus they have a silver sole which scratches that aesthetic itch:
3. Go to sleep! Our bodies don’t recover like they used to. It takes days for me to recover from a big workout and if I don’t sleep, it literally takes me 10 minutes to get out of bed. And when I do, I walk like the tin man. So, if you happen to text me after 9pm, I’m TKO and you’ll have to wait 7-9 hours for a response! Guys! Just go to bed. (Pictures of a Sleeping Me are boring so here’s a photo of me before I turned 40 and knew better):