The big 4-0 sneaks up like a thief in the night.
Suddenly, it’s easier to gain weight, and harder to lose it.
Your muscles are more tired, more often. And things all around are generally…squishier.
Thankfully, all hope is not lost.
By adopting a health-conscious lifestyle, you can turn back the clock and transform your body in ways you never imagined.
To that end, we’ve rounded up the best tips and tricks to get your lifestyle in shape. Follow them to a tee and you’ll be ready to grace any beach in your bikini with confidence.
1. Always Be HITT’ing
High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) involves quick and intense moves followed by short periods of recovery.
According to a study in the Journal of Obesity, HIIT is more effective at reducing “abdominal body fat than other types of exercise.”
What’s more, research has found that women over 40 who incorporate HIIT into their routines enjoy similar benefits to those who started even before age 30.
2. Aim for 10,000 Steps A Day
Learning to walk is not only a major milestone for infants, but it’s also one of the most important steps we can take to stay at optimal health.
Walking 10,000 steps a day will keep you limber, prevent atrophy, and maintain healthy cardiovascular function.
3. Plan Your Routine
Your body’s metabolism changes with age, but it doesn’t mean that it has to slow down.
A healthy diet and exercise plan is a sure way to keep it in check.
That way, there’s no room to deviate from the plan.
4. Stay Hydrated
Drinking plenty of water before, during, and after your exercise will keep you feeling younger.
Fluids dilute digestive enzymes and can slow digestion and efficient absorption of vital nutrients.
To get optimal nutrition (protein, carbs, fats, vitamins, and minerals) from the foods you eat, drink your fluids 30 minutes before and 30 minutes after your meals.
The right balance of nutrients and healthy digestion are the keys to efficient energy metabolism.
5. Go for a Swim
One of the best places to achieve a well-rounded workout without applying too much stress and strain to your bones and joints is in the pool.
A good swimming routine will work just about every muscle in your body, from your shoulders all the way down to your calves, and leave you feeling more energized than ever.
6. Lift Some Weights
If you want to look positively slender, adding muscle to your frame should be goal number one. But having a toned figure isn’t just about looks.
For every pound of muscle on your body, you burn about 6 calories per hour—just by doing nothing.
7. Eat a Protein at Every Meal
When it comes to optimizing your diet for a sexy body, protein is far and away the most important nutrient.
It helps build muscle fiber and boost post-workout muscle recovery, all while granting you essential energy.
Eat lots of white meat chicken (it’s lower in fat than dark meat) and sockeye salmon (it’s loaded with heart-healthy Omega-3s).
8. Don’t Skip Carbs
As long as you’re working out often—you shouldn’t forgo carbs altogether.
Just make sure to eat the healthy stuff: quinoa, oats, and whole wheat options wherever possible.
9. Eat Plenty of Fiber
Fiber is a component of some carbohydrates that cannot be digested.
It pushes through our system and cleans out along the way.
As such, loading up on fiber will leave you feeling fuller for longer.
10. Say No To Alcohol
One of the most sneaky culprits for weight gain: alcoholic drinks.
For starters, alcohol itself is calorie-rich—and the calories are “empty,” or nurtitionaly useless, to boot (a two-ounce pour of gin, for instance, can have nearly 150 calories.)
Then, pile on juices, sugars, syrups—and there’s no way you’re having only one.
These numbers add up. So, stay away.
11. Get 7-9 Hours of Sleep Every Night
Gripe and whine all you want, but, according to the National Sleep Foundation, adults between the ages of 26 and 64 need about 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night for maximum muscle recovery.
Getting your nightly eight-or-so hours will help boost brain function, control your weight gain hormones and keep your hunger pangs at bay.
12. Be Consistent
Consistency is key to losing weight and keeping it off. And as your body ages, regaining momentum becomes more difficult.
So start a consistent routine, and don’t stop. The tips and tricks above, ultimately, is not rocket science.
Be consistent with them and you’ll see yourself slimmer, sexier and of course healthier.