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fitness at 40 chat | round one q+a


January 18, 2024

This post has been a LONG time coming… I chatted with y’all on Instagram a few weeks ago asking what all you wanted to know about my fitness + health journey over the past year and you were loud + clear = you want ALL the information!! With an overwhelming number of responses, I wanted to sit down and make this a proper series of posts dedicated to everything fitness, health, food and more.

This segment has been a huge component of my life over the past 5 years and you know I am an open book and always happy to share the personal stuff with you = not only does it keep me accountable, but its a facet that I think is super important the older I get. For each post in this series, I’ll be answering a handful of questions that were sent in from followers and my hope is that it’s insightful and easy to intepret + integrate to your life in the effort to lead a more healthy + active life in 2024 and beyond!

Believe it or not, I don’t follow a set “plan” anymore. If you’ve been here for the long run, you know I did Faster Way pretty religiously for 3+ years. It was a fantastic program as it really helped me build a foundation of food with tracking macros, carb cycling and intermittent fasting as part of my daily food + movement, but ultimately my body plateaued and I wanted something different. Having said that, if you’re just getting started, it’s a great program to help you understand all the basics and I highly recommend it. [here are a few posts of my Faster Way journey, results, details, etc: beginning FWTFL in 2018, round 1 results, round 2 results and 2021 updates.]

From that, I transitioned to Madeline Moves and doing her Tighter Together challenge. I had a lot of friends who recommended it as a different option [still tracking macros, etc but no fasting] so I enjoyed that aspect as well. I also LOVE the MM app for at-home workouts = they are efficient and fairly quick and very easy to complete on your own… I still use her workouts for a lot of the moves I do weekly!

As for what I am working on with food now, I aim for at least 100g of protein a day. That’s a happy medium for me… fueling my body with what it needs to do to perform and also a fairly simple way of achieving my goals! Yes, some days are harder than others, but I definitely live by the 80/20 rule. And no, I don’t manage to make it to 100g each + every day [especially on the weekends/when I’m traveling/etc] but if I can achieve it 5/7 days of the week I’m a very happy girl!

Another one of you ased if it was challenging switching from Faster Way to Madeline Moves? I didn’t find it difficult at all. Honestly, a lot of the educational components I learned about food + fitness doing FWTFL were integral to mastering MM so it made it easier to understand! Here is additional info and posts on Madeline Moves and more about her Tighter Together Challenge.

I think this is where people get super overwhelmed… I know 100g of protein can seem super high, but honestly if you can make small changes to your diet you can get to that number fairly easily! For instance, if you’re like me and you love breakfast = make some of my famous overnight oats the night before. They are super high in protein because I use my favorite protein powder [linked below] + mix in chia seeds before I pop in the fridge so by the time 9am rolls around, I’ve already consumed almost 1/3 of my protein goal. If I don’t eat oatmeal in the morning, another easy option are the Jimmy Dean Delights Sandwiches!

For lunch, a lot of times I’ll do grilled chicken with a side salad or if you’re short on time/food at home, simply order something from Cava, Chopt, Chipotle, Chik-Fil-A, etc. There are lots of options from these restaurants where you can get in 30-40g of protein without going overboard on calories and/or fat.

As for a late afternoon snack, I am a creature of habit and always have a Grab the Gold bar and Chomps sticks in my bag = 23G of protein and it tides me over until dinner is served.

Now let’s face it… dinner can be tricky depending on the night. For us, we have to make quick meals that usually involve some type of protein [steak, chicken, porkchops, etc] and a salad + starch. It’s not brain science = it’s us just trying to eat well but still make it quickly. And yes, sometimes that involves Trader Joe’s frozen meals and brown rice and other times it’s something I can throw in the slow cooker and let cook all day! I add all our go-to recipes + good eats here on the blog under Food + Drink so you can bookmark your favs as well.

Honestly, I think my nighttime chauffeuring schedule has made a relaxing glass of wine at home almost impossible. I’m constantly in the car carting the kids around from their practices and rehearsals so gone are the days of being at home on a weeknight. I also found that I wasn’t sleeping well on nights I would have a cocktail/glass of wine so for me it was another reason to eliminate the excess because sleep is WAY more important to me than the extra empty calories + consumption. And you know there are more health benefits that include a reduced risk of type-2 diabetes, heart disease and some types of cancer.

Now, I’ll have a few drinks on the weekend + special occasions but that’s about it. Now when we’re on vacation, that’s another story because you only live once and your girl loves her aperols + adult beverages at the beach ;).

Now that I’ve been working out with Avery at 4×4 Mobile Fitness for almost 8 months now, I have found myself REALLY focusing more on weights and strength training than cardio ever before. The benefits are huge, especially for those of us over 40 = increased muscle mass, improved sleep, increases my energy + metabolism, and it helps my bone health + a decreased risk for injury too [i.e. things I have to start thinking about NOW].

I also just really prefer lifting weights rather than cardio so it’s a win win for me personally. It’s also helped me to up my resting metabolism [otherwise known as metabolic rate] = so for me, I try to get in 4 days at the gym each week. Here’s the breakdown of what I do:

I start with a 10 minute walk on the treadmill at a 4.0 pace with a 12% incline. I get my leg day done at the beginning of the week, and then the next workout will be a full body/core focus. By mid-week, I move onto all things arms and then the last workout of the week is a full body concentration again! I thought it would be easier to make a chart of some of my favorite moves by area so that you can save to use on your own:

Just try to make a focus to move every single day. Even if it’s a small walk around your neighborhood or meeting friends for a quick session of pickleball, make it fun! If fitness just isn’t your thing, keep trying to find something you do enjoy, that way you’ll actually want to do it and it’s easier to incorporate into your daily routine.

I think a lot of you out there assume I have this lofty list of snacks I swear by… and I’m the first one to admit that I am a creature of habit and usually eat the same things day after day = honestly because I know what works for me and two I don’t have time to constantly reinvent the wheel. Here are a few favorites I always have on-hand [that also happen to be picky kid approved as well]:

So there you have it… the first installment of everything fitness at 40! Next time, I’ll be tackling endurance, favorite fitness brands, how to lessen your sugar intake and more.

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2024 favs

where I shop

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colorful life + style blogger | native nashvillian | wife and mom to two darling little ladies | bringing you all the happy you can handle

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