Maybe we’ve finally discovered the fountain of youth. When Sarah wrote about her life-changing 100 days, she wondered if she might be aging in reverse.
I know exactly how she feels because I feel significantly more youthful, strong, and vibrant than I did two and a half years ago. Back then, somehow the fountain of youth seemed to be being involved in everything, having the energy to party late at night, drink, dance, pull my hungover self into work, drink coffee, switch to caffeinated soda, eat on the run…you get the picture. There was too little sleep and even fewer healthy choices.
Two and a half years later, I look better, and even more importantly, I feel ready to take on whatever challenge comes across my path. I feel like I’ve aged in reverse, back to becoming the athlete I once was. I didn’t even realize how much I missed her when she was pushed into the fringe of my life. But she waited patiently to return. After a hiatus, I’m back to looking at each day with optimism, wondering what adventures it would bring. I’m back to smiling just because I knew I was lucky and happy. I’m back to physically feeling I can do just about anything if I put my mind to it. I’m back to feeling like I’m flying when I run.
It’s an amazing feeling. So here are my tips for aging in reverse:
1) Pick 3 timeslots evenly spaced throughout each week that you’ll workout. Realize this time is just a crucial as the time you spend sleeping and eating. For me, it works best that it’s the same from now to eternity: Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday mornings. And for those 5:30am wakeups before work – move the alarm clock across your bedroom. Easiest cure ever for my snooze button addiction.
2) Spend time with your friends and loved ones outside being active. Whatever the activity, fresh air and movement will serve you way better than either happy hour or Sunday Funday.
3) Find your go-to fruit smoothie combination and drink it everyday as part of your morning routine. For me it’s banana, frozen berries and oj. Loaded with antioxidants, vitamins and all around deliciousness.
4) Find the healthy foods that you look forward to eating just as much as you love junk. Fresh fish, berries, avocadoes, tomatoes, whole wheat couscous, almonds – what’s not to love.
6) Treat yourself to fabulous beer and wine. You deserve it! It’s also much easier to have just one when it’s amazing and you take the time to savor it.
7) Make friends with the weight section of your gym. Weights are my ally in packing on muscle and muscle is my best friend for feeling strong and burning more calories. Not to mention, it burns more calories than flab.
8) Establish a fitness routine that incorporates cardio, muscle and core strengthening exercises and stretching–this is your workout, so own it! Realize that with modifications you can do this at any time in any location. There’s no need to attend a specific class, be in the gym, or have it be a certain time of day. Yes that includes hotel rooms, beaches, forests and a bocce ball court. I’ve done them all. And when people stare just ask if they want to join the fun.
9) Dance to your favorite songs and sing along to them in the car. I’ve got no talent for either singing or dancing, but that doesn’t stop me from having American Idol moments with my hairbrush to my favorite country songs.
10) If you’re lucky enough to have kids in your life (sons, daughters, nieces, nephews, friends’ kids), get in on their games. Get down on the floor, play make believe, legos, barbie, tag in the house, water balloon fights. You’ll be smiling and laughing just as much of them and feel like a kid again.
What tips do you have? Please share! The Fit Approach gals can’t wait to give them a try.