There’s a great article about fitness for the over the fifties in today’s Daily Telegraph – made particularly good by my own comments and pictures, I feel!
I hope that more and more over fifties get the fitness fix as a result…
I’ve spent a few years following various nutrition approaches – from very precise all the way down to totally random! These experiences have led me to devise an approach to nutrition for fitness which is flexible, enjoyable and workable in daily life. It does require a bit of understanding, and there are rules to be – well, if not obeyed, then ‘observed’. And there is a bit of maths involved too – not too much, but counting and multiplying do come into it.
The approach is designed for those who want to increase their fitness levels, decrease their fatness levels and – probably for most – a bit of both. It assumes you are already pretty active and undertake exercise most days of the week.
To save ploughing through some big articles, I’ve put my recommended approach down into two videos; the first describes how the numbers work – calculating calories, grams of macronutrients and timing. The second then takes those ideas further and translates them into real life eating – real meals on a real day on a real test subject (that’s me, of course).
I’ve kept both the detail of the maths and the full calorie and macronutrient breakdown away from the videos – but you can see this, if your geek-level is high enough, on my web site – www.FitnessOverFifty.co.uk then choose Easy Nutrition on the Nutrition tab.
I hope that all works for you and you pick up an approach to healthy eating that can see you through to your fitness goals. Drop me an email if anything needs a chat through!
I’ve been working with the guys at Damart to produce a very quick and easy guide to fitness for the over 50’s – with a few exercise ideas and descriptions of other activities that could assist those (like me) in the better half century of life.
The document is A Damart fitness guide for over 50s and is an introduction to building activity and movement into the lives of those who realise how beneficial exercise can be at this time of life – without getting too much of a glow on and without going to a gym. Take a look and see some ideas that may just help to add years to life, and life to your years.
The nice guys over at SCI-MX www.sci-mx.co.uk sent me over a box of goodies and I thought I would share my thoughts of one of their products in the box – the Recover 2:1 Isolate.
I chose this product as this isn’t a nutrition style I normally take. It is designed for post-workout recovery – and for this function, I normally take a combination of a low carb whey protein isolate shake plus some fast natural carbs – usually a banana or perhaps some slices of pineapple, both consumed 15-30 minutes after the workout. So I normally get my amino acids for muscle building from the shake, and my fast carbs for glycogen replenishment from the fruit.
This product combines both functions into one drink. It has both the protein and fast carbs needed in one go – and is a great orange flavour (and rather stunning orange colour) too! A serving of the product is 80g – which is more than my typical protein shake, which is already a large portion at 60g. That is due to the extra ingredients – specifically the fast carbs.
I want to look at the product in more depth – and as always with me – it starts with the numbers. The first numbers on the label are those in the ratio 2:1 – which refers to the ratio of carbs to protein in the product; 51g of carbs go with the 24g of protein in that 80g portion.
Overall, the calorie per portion of SCI-MX Recover 2:1 Isolate comes to 300 per serving – which compares with around 220 in my usual whey shake. However, if I add that medium-sized banana or the pineapple rings – which roughly work out to 80 calories each – then these numbers are nice and close – which makes comparisons easier.
Let’s look at the protein. That 300 calories portion of Recover delivers 24g of protein including 2.5g of the all-important BCAA’s. My usual shake gives a whopping 48g of protein including 5.5g of BCAAs – in just 220 calories – so on the face of it, the Recover isn’t the winner here. But remember that with Recover, purely protein delivery isn’t the object here; its carbs too.
So let’s look now at the carbs, just as important for the body post-workout as the protein but for different reasons. In that single portion, Recover provides 51g of carbs, including 25g of dextrose-based sugar, compared to 23g of carbs with 14g of sugar in a typical banana – and zero in the whey isolate, of course. So Recover is great for getting a generous serving of fast-acting sugars, delivered just when the glycogen levels are depleted.
What about the third macronutrient – fat? Well, there’s zero in Recover – that’s absolutely zero by the way, not close to zero as some zero products claim – which compares to a few grams in the usual whey and banana combo. But not enough for me to worry about.
Also interesting are the micronutrients. Recover provides substantial chunks of vitamin C (must be the orange colour – joke), calcium and phosphorous and magnesium. You’d find most of these in the whey + banana combination too – but in different amounts. For example, the 170mg of calcium in a recommended serving of Recover compares with 280mg in my normal whey + banana treat; however, in the opposite direction, a single serving of Recover provides three times as much fatigue-reducing magnesium as in the whey + banana approach.
A couple of things I didn’t find in Recover are the potassium which bananas are famous for, and the dietary fibre that comes from consuming the fruit. In the opposite direction a serving of Recover provides nearly 5g of creatine monohydrate, a compound well-loved by those seeking muscular rebuild and growth. And this creatine is the final 5g to bring the 51g of carbs and 24g of protein up to the serving size of 80g.
So, in summary on the macro nutrients, and rounded for ease of comparison, this product gives 50g of carbs and 25g of protein per serving. And my usual whey protein isolate plus banana switches the numbers the other way round – 25g of carbs and 50g of protein.
That’s 2:1 fast carbs to protein. And my usual whey protein shake plus fruit is 1:2, with the bulk being protein with the ration this way round – that’s a big difference. The 2:1 ratio of carbs to protein is favoured by many as a post-recovery drink – so this product is perfect to get that ratio.
So what is my conclusion? I like to keep my carbs lower than most – even after a resistance workout – so for body recovery and muscle growth + maintenance, then I’m probably going to stick to the low-carb combination of whey protein isolate and the fruit after most of my workouts. But if I feel I need more fast carbs than the banana or slices of pineapple can provide, maybe after a particularly tough session, or a long run, then I would reach for the SCI-MX Recover 2:1 Isolate to really up the carbs, even at the expense of some protein.
I’ve also done a video review of the product – take a look here.
Thanks again to the guys at SCI-MX for sending the products and the invitation to review.
As we get to the start of the year, there’s one anniversary I want to celebrate in fitness from the end of the last one – 2015 marked 50 years since Gold’s Gym in Venice Beach, California opened its doors.
Its one of my favourite places, and to mark that 50, here’s a short video I made there recently about some of the weird and wonderful exercise equipment to be found deep within its cavernous interior. Many thanks to Keith Cormican for the filming.
Hope you enjoy it, here’s to the next 50 years of a great place from Fitness Over Fifty!http://bitly.com/ChrisGoldsAt50
I had a great day on Monday with Alex Blakemore of Notts TV.
Alex is filming a documentary in a few weeks focussing on people taking up fitness late in their lives, and he asked me to appear – I guess I qualify!
He came to London as a pre-filming introduction, we shared a couple of pretty intense workouts (arms and legs) and a high-protein lunch. And being a trendy young chap, he videod the day and made a vlog from it (its what young people do, don’t you know!).
Take a look at he vlog (link below) – and once you’ve done that, see his other great videos using the link on the comments of this one:
I’m lucky to have tried gyms all around the world, in just about every continent (damn you, Antarctica) – and I was pleased to receive an invitation to visit Fitness First in Tottenham Court Road last week, just down the road from my usual London gym in fact.
This was my first visit to the gym and I was impressed by the huge range of facilities there – at 6pm, there were four exercise classes taking place simultaneously, all well-attended. I don’t know many other UK gyms that have the amount of separate studio rooms that would be needed to support that number of activities.
And there is, as you’d expect, a large range of cardio machines – with multi-channel TV – and a large resistance training area with a good weights platform (for all of you who for some reason insist on dropping the bar in a deadlift rather than lowering under control) plus dozens of machines from calf raise to shoulder shrugs and everything in between. For virtually every machine, there are multiple instances – I think I counted four leg extension machines, for example.
All good – and massively popular. And that, perhaps, is a drawback – it was very crowded in the cardio, free weights and resistance training area. A workout would need to be flexible if you didn’t ever want to wait for anything. Supersetting could be a bit difficult, I expect.
A more personal drawback is that it doesn’t have high ceilings. I know that may be seen as a weird comment, but I like training in an airy space – in London, think of Jubilee Gym in Covent Garden, and Fitness First’s own locations in St Pauls and Broadgate, both of which have partially double-height workout areas. Further afield, two of my favourite gyms – Hercules Gym in Telford and Gold’s in Venice Beach – both have high warehouse-high rooflines, which contribute to the atmosphere (it for me, anyway).
There’s also a swimming pool, which I didn’t use, and looked pretty tempting if you like that in your gym. I’ve discovered that putting a swimming pool in a Fitness First gym usually moves the membership category up a tier – which means those with Fitness First memberships of a more lowly calibre can’t use any of the facilities there – which is why this was my first visit.
In summary, Fitness First Tottenham Court Road is a great gym with more equipment and a bigger floor area than I’ve seen in any other London Fitness First. And I guess the popularity was due to my 6pm visit time. Go at some less popular hour, and I know you’ll have a great workout! Checkout their website and you may just find a way to get a free one-day pass.
And thanks so much to Shaun and the team at Fitness First Tottenham Court Road for inviting me over for the visit.
I spend a lot of time doing my best to keep fit and make progress in the gym. But it isn’t all just for vanity (a bit maybe, but not all!).
What I do in and around the gym helps keep me fit for life, and the benefits accrue in many different ways. They add up to enjoyment in pretty much every aspect of my life.
Filmed last November, when the weather was lousy here, Dan Wynes and I decided to do a quick all-body-part workout together showing some of our favourite exercises for Arms, Back, Chest, Shoulders and Legs – and then crammed them all into a quick four minute video.
And to make you truly jealous of the winter weather, we hopped on a plane and did it outside at sunny Muscle Beach in Los Angeles.
If you want to see these fave exercises, or just like seeing other people doing the work in the sunshine (or even see if my music choice has improved), take a look – its the top left video on www.bitly.com/ChrisVideos
One of the world’s best gyms – probably the very best actually – is Gold’s in Venice Beach in Los Angeles. They have a good yard out the back for working out in the California sunshine – but one problem is they really don’t like filming taking place.
But when I was there with Dan Wynes we managed to sneak a friendly cameraman’s lens through a hole in the fence – giving a very paparazzi and illegal look to what already appears like a jailyard in the first place!
Take a look at the video, so if you agree…