Three Fitness Goals For Anyone Older Than 30

If you are over 30, what are you doing to stay in shape? Do you have a fitness plan that sets you up for the next 50 years of your life? How do you know that you are paying attention to the aspects of your physical health that really matter in the long run?

I am both a former fat kid (the politically correct term in the 80s was 'husky') and a former personal trainer. I was never a great athlete but in my late 20s was bench pressing over 300 pounds and squatting more than 600 pounds. I am not genetically advantaged but for twenty years, hard work and consistency have set me up well physically. 

Six years ago, I decided to change my approach to how I trained. I did not need to train functionally to play a sport. I wasn't working out to impress other gym rats with how much I loaded onto a vertical leg press machine. The only reason anyone was going to look at me on the beach was because I have cute kids. My body was also pretty banged up - tendonitis in my left biceps, both hip flexors were shot, and I needed weekly chiropractic adjustments from a car accident when I was 10 and years of heavy military press and even heavier squats.

So I walked away from the gym and haven't been back. I sat down and thought about what was going to matter most to me physically when I turn 75. I wrote down three goals that I want you to adopt as your own:

Core Strength

When I am 75 years old, I want to be able to move - to stand up, walk, sit down, repeat. Simple as that. I don't need big arms, a swollen chest and massive quads to do that. What I do need is strength and stability in my abdominal muscles, hips and lower back. 

Cardiovascular Capacity

When I am 75 years old, I want my heart to pump, my blood to flow and my lungs to expand. Simple as that. I don't need to be running marathons, competing in triathlons or participating in Jump Rope For Heart. I need to strengthen my heart, diaphragm and lungs, improve circulation and increase the total number of red blood cells (which facilitate the transport of oxygen).

Flexibility

When I am 75 years old, I want to be able to raise my arms over my head, bend my knees and touch my toes. Simple as that. I don't need to be a contortionist or a gymnast. I do need a strong and flexible spine and stability around my knees, ankles and shoulders.

Along with the proper amount of sleep and caring about what you eat (write this down - you cannot outwork a bad diet), these three fitness goals will set you up for physical health the rest of your life. They will help you decide if workout programs like CrossFit, the P90X or Insanity series, DDPYoga (what I currently use to train) are a good fit. And they'll provide the physical and mental stamina you need to be effective as a leader. 

How are you putting one or more of these goals into practice this week? Share in the comments.

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