HEALTHY OVER 50: 7 Habits Healthy Women Make Time For!
Being Healthy Over 50 will help you do all the things you love to do in this later half of life. Here are 7 habits HEALTHY women over 50 make time for!
1. They get enough SLEEP!
Healthy women strive to get a good night’s sleep! This was number 1 in my article FIT OVER 50 | 6 Habits Fit Women Make Time For and it’s number 1 here because sleep is so critical to optimal health. While we sleep, many important functions take place that help the body to recover and repair, to support brain development, cardiac function and body metabolism, as well as support learning, improving memory and mood.
I can read your mind, “Amy, I know this but I just can’t get enough sleep!” I get it! Since I hit peri menopause and now full menopause getting enough sleep has been an ongoing experiment. I’ve tried everything (except getting rid of my cat) to help improve my sleep; melatonin, magnesium, lavender, earbuds, sleep masks, meditation, counting sheep…
The only thing that helped is going on Hormone Replacement Therapy, cutting out wine and sugar at night and trying to keep a consistent bedtime. That said, I had no wine or sugar last night and my sleep score was still low (I use my Fitbit to track my sleep). So I’ll keep experimenting and maybe I’ll find the magic formula. How do you get enough sleep?
2. They know their numbers!
Healthy women know their basic numbers and more. What numbers am I talking about? The basic numbers of health; cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar and body mass index (BMI). These can tell you and your doctor about your risk for many illnesses, including heart attack, stroke, kidney disease, and diabetes. Having these numbers on file helps your doctor better understand your health, monitor your progress and advise you on treatment and lifestyle changes. Knowing your levels can help you choose specific health goals (like lowering your cholesterol) and can be a motivating factor in making new healthier habits.
REALLY healthy women know more than this.
They know their hormone levels, they know where they might be deficient in nutrients such as Vitamin D, Iron, Calcium, Magnesium, etc. and they know how to get them on their own. Most insurance plans only cover the basics but it’s very easy and fairly inexpensive to get your own blood work done. I’ve done this for my hormones (because my doctor wouldn’t do it), I have done this to see if I was deficient in any nutrients and my husband got some blood work done on his own to understand if he had any inflammatory signals that might be causing his joint pain. There are many websites that offer this service. All you do is order the test, take that order to a local blood draw center and they send you the results. I use Your Lab Works because of the options and discounted prices they have. You can check out their website here YOUR LAB WORKS and become your own heath detective!
3. They make healthy food choices!
Healthy women make healthy food choices. It isn’t easy, they work at it. They create meal plans so they have healthy options on hand, they cook dinner as opposed to going out or they order healthy meals or kits. When we know we can’t cook at home or it’s going to be busy I order a batch of FRESHLY prepared meals. They’re healthy, super easy and taste pretty good.
Healthy women also use my Ideal Plate Guide! Half of their plate is colorful veggies, one quarter is a healthy protein, the other quarter is a healthy carb and there is some healthy fat sprinkled in. They try to follow this guide for every meal; even breakfast (which I find the most challenging to get in veggies). If you’d like a copy of my Ideal Plate Guide with homework for you to create your own ideal plates for each meal and examples just click HERE. How do you make healthy choices?
4. They find healthier swaps for the things they love!
Healthy women find healthy swaps for the treats they love. They don’t deprive themselves, they try to find something a bit healthier; instead of ice cream they have fruit and yogurt, instead of milk chocolate they enjoy dark chocolate, instead of sugar, flour loaded cookies they’ll make their own or find ones with almond flour and a natural sugar. We just found an online site called THRIVE Market that is full of healthy swaps and I can’t believe the prices. You have to sign up for a membership (like CostCo) and I’ve ordered from them several times already for healthy cookies, grain free chips, even grass fed, free range organic meats! I think if you use this link you get 25% off your first order and a free gift THRIVE MARKET
That said, healthy women only do this only 80%-90% of the time. I can’t imagine eating healthy all the time, life is just too short not to enjoy that piece of pizza or cake. They enjoy every bite then get back to eating healthy the next day!
5. They drink more water and less wine!
Healthy women get “enough” water for them. They’ve figured out what that amount is or have worked with their doctor. AND they’re watching their wine intake. I LOVE my Butter Chardonnay but I know that it affects my sleep, it makes me eat things I shouldn’t and the next day I’m always a bit more hungry because my blood sugar is off and my brain isn’t as sharp.
If you need to lose weight, wine needs to be a one or two nights a week occurrence. Most women find it very hard to lose weight AND continue to drink. Did you know the average glass of Cabernet has 122 calories? On average, it would take a 10-minute run to burn off one glass of wine. Keep that in mind the next time you reach to refill your wine glass, and consider grabbing that water instead.
6. They manage their STRESS!
Healthy women find tools to manage their stress. Stress has a quantifiable impact on your body and health. When a woman comes to me asking how to reduce her belly fat or lose weight the first thing I ask her is “how is your stress level?” During periods of stress, the adrenal glands release a hormone called cortisol. This, in turn, fills the body with glucose to give our muscles enough immediate energy to deal with the threat. This isn’t a bad thing for short periods of time. It can help us get through an important presentation or run away from that saber toothed tiger!
However, during periods of prolonged stress, increased cortisol and blood glucose levels cause us to hold onto everything (store fat) and of course in all the wrong places.
Finding ways to manage your stress is as important as diet and exercise not only to lose weight but also to prevent illness and disease. Tools I’ve found helpful are meditation, lowering the intensity of your workouts, reading, learning breathing techniques! Here is a stress relieving technique I learned from Dr Andrew Weil. He says the Navy Seals use this when they’re underwater. I filmed a short video showing you how HERE,
7. They make EXERCISE a priority!
Healthy AND Fit women, make exercise a high priority and don’t find excuses not to workout. They have a routine and know what to do to stay fit over 50. Whether it’s a gym class, a YouTube video or following along to one of my Be Healthy Enough Workouts, they make sure to get it done.
They also know the importance of having a plan! They know what workout they’re going to do on what day and even where they will get it done. Then they set up an appointment in their calendar for exercise and it does not get sacrificed to someone else’s needs or to work that can wait.
They also don’t get pulled back into that myth we learned in our 30s! Workouts do not have to be a sweaty hour long session that leaves you feeling beat up or worse, hurt. Exercise should feel good and if it doesn’t it’s time to stop doing what you did in your 30s and join the Be Healthy Enough Digital Fitness Studio!
If you’d like some help with your health or fitness journey why not schedule a FREE 30 Minute Wellness Consultation with me. I’d love to help in any way that I can. Click the book now link below and find a time that works for you
If you’re a woman over 50 and you’d like to get moving and feel better you should try one of my online workouts designed just for us; low impact cardio to protect our joints, strength training because it’s a must as we age, Pilates because a strong core = a strong body and more.
Oh and you can try ALL of my workouts FREE for 7 Days by clicking HERE and signing up!