Balance your training


A woman Coldstream Guards British Army fitness instructor Lance Corporal Farren Morgan..

I am always interested in how people who follow a fitness lifestyle change their diet, training and objectives as they move through the different stages of their life.


As a personal trainer, I work with clients of all ages, and there is variance in the kinds of objectives my clients have, depending on their stage of life. From my experience over the years, those clients seeking a personal trainer who are in their 20s and 30s tend to focus on specific outcomes (muscle growth, weight loss, preparing for a fitness event of some kind etc.), while those in their 40s and 50s focus more on maintaining their fitness and physical ability (so as to remain strong).


Moving upwards from this point, my clients tend to focus on mobility, maintaining a full, range of physical abilities and robustness as they advance forward in life.


Of course, all people are different and have different drives, but as a general rule, I find the above to be the case.


So, I find it fascinating reading about the approach of different people as they move through their key life stages and what changes for them as they do so. In this light, personal trainer Anna Schuchman recently spoke to The Telegraph about how her fitness lifestyle changed in her 30s after she became a parent.


Schuchman is in her early 40s today and has a thriving fitness business of her own.


One of the principles that come out of Schuchman's account of her changing fitness lifestyle, particularly over the past ten years, is how her training has focused more on resistance and weight training during this time, while her diet has incorporated more protein alongside this training programme change.


In my opinion, Schuchman is on the right path in making such changes at this stage of her life (and especially after the birth of a child). Focusing on strength and onboarding enough fuel to maintain a strong physical and mental approach when training with this kind of objective is vital.


It is simply not possible to undertake resistance or weight training without upping the protein and maintaining a healthy diet to ensure enough energy is available to make the gains that strength training requires and to be successful with this kind of regime. If this does not happen exhaustion, demoralisation and potential injury will, in all likelihood, be the outcome.


Schuchman also points to the importance of getting enough sleep to support her lifestyle (in her case, getting to bed at a sensible time and getting seven to eight hours of sleep each night). Again this is vital to be able to train successfully and live a full life as, without enough sleep, the body cannot rest and repair, while our minds cannot process our daily experiences.


Key principles are important when we train, but understanding the nuances which shape those experiences because of the kind of training we undertake is also vital.


Understand the body, appreciate what support our preferred training methods will require, and success will follow.


Julien

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