Mus­cle mass needs at­ten­tion as you age

Ask Dr Libby

Selwyn and Ashburton Outlook - - MOTORING -

Email your ques­tions for Dr Libby to ask.dr­libby@fair­fax­me­dia.co.nz. Please note, only a se­lec­tion of ques­tions can be an­swered. morn­ing and then you do your high-in­ten­sity ex­er­cise for 40 min­utes. What do the other 15 hours of your day look like? If you spend most of your day stressed or in a rush, the in­tense ex­er­cise will just be an ex­tra 40 min­utes that you are in what I like to call the ‘‘red zone’’ (sym­pa­thetic ner­vous sys­tem dom­i­nance).

If this is the case for you, then I would en­cour­age fo­cus­ing on gen­tler move­ment such as yoga, tai chi or walk­ing. If this doesn’t ring true for you, and you feel en­er­gised and up­lifted at the end of your high-in­ten­sity ex­er­cise and you love do­ing it, that’s great – keep go­ing with it. In­ter­val train­ing is a bet­ter choice for main­tain­ing mus­cle mass and us­ing body fat than a straight out high-in­ten­sity work­out.

To help guide move­ment habits, I en­cour­age peo­ple to think about what they want from it – you want to have a func­tional body that al­lows you to move through your day with ease, you want to have the strength to carry your gro­ceries and your chil­dren (or grand­chil­dren), you want to have the flex­i­bil­ity to bend down and tie your shoelaces, and you want to feel up­lifted, not de­pleted.

123RF

Do some re­sis­tance train­ing as you age to main­tain or build mus­cle mass.

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