It’s amazing how your world view changes as you grow older.
Older or wiser, it’s one or the other.
I recently turned 40, a wonderful and meaningful event for me and something which I am entirely comfortable with. But turning 40, and thinking about it before the day arrived, has changed the way I look at training, fitness and what I do in the gym when I train.
There is a popular attitude I have noticed that men and women (though particularly men) aged around the 40 mark are comfortable with, which is that exercise after the 40s is about maintenance and not about development. It’s a sort of giving in to the changes of life and something which I push back on.
In my opinion, moving into the 40s is about rethinking fitness, focusing on the future as much as the body, and keeping going while adapting to the change of natural circumstance. The important thing, I think, is to do this sensibly, whilst not giving up on setting goals and looking for achievements.
It remains the objective to continue challenging oneself and what one can achieve.
How you structure your workout moving forward is also important at this point, as this structure should reflect the changes in one’s life and body, but it should also be on the foundation that pulling back, or significantly dialling-down training, can lead to a whole heap of problems that can arrive very quickly and should be avoided.
Many people, if they train regularly, find that when they get to the age of 40 they become bored with their training and question why they are training at all. This can be because they have trained for so long (possibly in the same way for years) and/or because they have hit a mid-life crisis.
The mid-life crisis is real, meaningful and should be embraced, not masked or avoided. It is a fundamental stage in every person’s life, particularly in the life of men, and an opportunity to consider our place in the universe.
One way around this challenge is to change the kind of exercises undertaken or the training routine being followed - to freshen up both and make them more exciting and demanding. In this context, training can be rotated, for example, and full-body training introduced where previously the person concerned may have been following a split routine (which can become very monotonous over time).
Simply by changing this kind of regime, great benefits can be delivered in terms of strength, energy-levels and engagement. Also, by changing perspective and routines, fitness can become a more interesting and stimulating space.
As can the world around us and how we see ourselves in it.
So, avoid the boredom and change it up.
Your life will be better for doing so.