Dec 20, 2018
7 Fitness Studies from 2018 for Exercise After 50
This round up of 2018 research and resources will help you age better, get stronger, and lose weight for good after menopause. Most of the studies were published, a couple were pilots presented at conferences and a bonus 8thresearch study from 2015 I throw in because of the significant results a sneaky little trick gives Flipping 50 students.
You may have thoughts about belly fat, cellulite, and weight gain in general… but it’s your heart that is … at the heart of it.
As you’re looking at the New Year and your exercise routine with fresh goals here’s something to consider. In a study published by the American Heart Association, supervised exercise 4-5 days a week had significant improvements in heart performance compared with a control group that did basic stretching and balance moves.
Barre exercise? Not your best friend if you want to turn back the clock.
Better than on the couch? Yes.
Significantly better next year? No.
Intensity? or Frequency?
It doesn’t have to be hard. It has to be done.
Yoga and barre can have a place in your regular routine, they just can’t be the entire routine if you want to live longer most optimally.
A study looked at physical activity and sedentary time against cardiovascular disease biomarkers in 60 to 64 year olds.
Greater time in light PA and moderate‐to‐vigorous intensity PA and less sedentary time were associated with more favorable biomarker levels. For C‐reactive protein, interleukin‐6, and leptin, these differences were greater among women than men.
These biomarkers are big news given C-reactive protein is a measure of inflammation – both important for disease risk and often a part in weight loss resistance - and leptin, which will fail to signal you to stop eating when you’re full. That coupled with stress or lack of sleep and hormones that increase appetite will
The big flip you want to make is that the two levels of activity that improve biomarkers – and hormones best - are that N.E.A.T. – longer slower activities like golf and gardening, Stand Up Paddle Boarding, that you do all day along with higher intensity exercise like intervals one or two times a week are best. Skip the middle of the road “no benefits zone” unless you do lots of half marathon racing.
Those hour long cardio sessions on cardio equipment are more likely to disrupt hormones that cause you to hold on to fat and just make you tired, not better.
Preliminary studies are those not yet published – and done on a small sample of subjects. One such study shows greater activity makes older adults feel younger.
This was a pilot study Presented at APA (American Psychological Association) Conference.
Feeling old? Wish you could turn back the clock? Adults who have more physical activity feel younger.
What happens when you feel younger? You act younger. You make plans, you start things, are more optimistic which all in turn make you even younger.
A five-year study on 70-77 year olds shows older adults choose walking most often, and social dancing next, and are willing to walk fast enough to make it intense without supervision. Women’s results were unique. The study found that women tend to choose lower intensity exercise than men and choose 60% of the time to exercise with others. For both men and women 2/3 of the exercise was done outdoors both summer and winter.
Surround yourself with a community whether it’s from the neighborhood, a private Facebook group, or a form of accountability like Flipping 50’s Café, knowing someone knows, matters.
If you often think, “I should be able to do this myself,”know that seeking support isn’t a sign of weakness, as my friend Joan Rosenberg points out, it’s a sign of humanness.
The Generation 100 research, from Norwegian University of Science and Technology includes 2 published studies.
Older adults who do the most exercise were twice as likely to be disease-free and fully functional – increasing their health span by 10 years. There’s a catch, however.
Physical activity levels need to be several times higher than what the WHO currently recommends (150 minutes of brisk walking or 75 minutes of running) to significantly reduce the risk of chronic disease.
So those friends, or if you are one, who don’t let friends get in the way of their daily exercise habit, or who have that religious long bike ride or run on the weekends, are probably going to outlive you… healthier. You want to be them.
Small things matter. When I go to a conference or speak at an event for instance. I will often skip the first session of a conference, or make sure I’ve made dinner plans that give me an hour to sneak in a workout and shower before dinner. I could often fly home the last day of the conference. Instead I stay an extra night and make sure I’ve had a long run in a new environment. I always pack running shoes and a swim suit.
This is from a Blue Mountains Eye Study begun in 1992 – one of the world’s largest epidemiology studies.
Interval training is still important. Unlike fads and trends it’s not going away any time soon, especially for those of us that are busy and who find time the biggest obstacle to exercise. Whether you do high intensity interval training 10 minutes 5 times a week or 20 minutes twice a week, it can make a difference.
[Note: if you do more than 45 minutes a week of intervals it can backfire on you with elevated cortisol and increased injury risk].
Obese post-menopausal women (average age 59) were featured in a study done at the University of Scranton published in the October Menopause journal. Those who did interval training lost twice as much weight (and 6 inches more body mass) as those who did more traditional brisk walking.
ONLY the HIIT group changed in fat mass. This is importance since weight loss that includes more muscle loss will eventually come back since it makes you fatter and less able to burn fat.
This is a part of the science behind Fit-U. For more information about how to get this program at 50% off as a Flipping 50 listener, if you have 20 or more pounds to lose, go to the show notes for the link or go to flippingfifty.com/fit-u
Post menopausal women (between 50 and 76: average age 62) did
8 weeks of strength training program vs. no strength training.
The exercise was a very simple twice-weekly two sets of “light” weight (25 reps).
The training group experienced significant:
Reduction in body fat
Increase fat-free mass (and total body water)
Quality of life ratings increased
The Flipping 50 STRONGER program can vouch for that, having now supported 180 women through our pilot study group and our first session, the self reports of “feeling” stronger are the most abundant feedback. Have participants lost inches, weight, and body fat? Yes, but by far the best-liked result was this unsolicited feeling of inner strength.
This last study I’m sneaking in even though it’s from 2015. This topic has been popping up in studies all year due to talk about toxins and fat loss resistance.
During menopause your ability to lose fat may be related to one simple factor. It’s not cutting out things as much as adding this one. It’s fiber.
Low dietary fiber is the most frequently involved factor in the risk of gaining weight.
Increased fiber is related to decreased risk of weight gain.
If you’re finding your personal fiber intake low, try adding a little boost daily for a month. You want to gradually ramp up. Flipping 50’s Fiber Boost is one way- it’s a natural source of five different fiber sources, like a plate of food, so your body can handle it better than some other products.
Start by adding a teaspoon to smoothies every day for week. Then add a teaspoon to soup every day too. Then increase those two servings slightly. By the end of the month your fiber intake will be significantly greater without disrupting your body as long as you also increase your water intake. You’ll be more regular – at reduced risk for colon cancer – and be supporting weight loss while crushing your cravings.
It can also have a lot to do with your DNA. After 34 years and research focused on hormones-balancing exercise, even I found something new from my genetic test results. A lower fat diet (meaning by default a bit higher in carbs) was a better solution for me. Without a health need to lose weight, but a few back-of-the-closet items that had been all but abandon, the simple shift helped me lose a few pounds, easily.
I’m not eating less, I’m just shifting the type of food I’m eating. A few less servings of guacamole and a few more sweet potatoes and that’s not a hard transition at all. In fact, when you start eating the way you’re built to eat, it’s often easier. Both your intuition and your body tell you so.
For information on DNA testing with a simple saliva test I will send to your door and make easy for you to return, then go over the result with you personally go to flippingfifty.com store to compare three options. Do it while you can save 20% off of genetic testing before Christmas, using the code genes. It’s a test that you’ll do once and learn how to live better, and stronger longer.
One more tip on how eating better- including more fiber can help you… Just like the order of exercises matter… eat your protein and veggies first. Finish with carbs. The sugar impact of them is lower. Do this even if you’re already choosing carbs wisely – skipping the bread and the chips basket they put in front of you at a restaurant – and opting for the brown rice and sweet potatoes. That life-is-short-eat-dessert-first mantra? Not so much.
Do you have a question? Leave it below the show link at flippingfifty.com/2018research, I love hearing from you! If this episode was helpful please leave a rating in iTunes and then share it with a friend! Surround yourself with a supportive community of women on the same journey.
To get the most from this week’s episode, check out today’s show notes at flippingfifty.com/2018research where you’ll find the juicy free download and resources mentioned on the show. Let’s start flipping 50 together!
https://doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.117.007459Journal of the American Heart Association. 2018;7:e007459