Three health fundamentals to thrive at 40 and past

Our new health columnist, Ollie Thompson, specialises in serving to career-focused professionals get into nice form, construct long-term well being and carry out higher of their work.

Named as one among London Night Requirements prime London Private Trainers, Ollie works throughout Cambridge and London and affords each in-person and digital private coaching. With greater than 7,500 hours of teaching underneath his belt, he’s been lucky to work with quite a lot of trade main purchasers, starting from CEOs and senior executives to stage performers, actors and docs. Look out for his subsequent column very sooln within the Cambridge Impartial.

Health author Ollie Thompson,

Through the years, I’ve helped greater than 100 people over the age of 40 to navigate midlife health, enhance their vitality and construct a sturdy pain-free physique for the longer term. Throughout this time, it has grow to be very clear to me that there are 3 key areas to position probably the most deal with in the case of health, which I’m going to share with you at the moment!

1 Transfer nicely and sometimes with train snacks

You’ll generally hear recommendation telling you to maneuver extra and keep lively, however what does this actually entail?


The human physique can transfer in an nearly infinite variety of methods. It’s essential to discover quite a lot of these frequently to remain wholesome, pain-free and stop stiffness. Our fashionable life trigger us to be very sedentary for a lot of the week. There are pockets of time whenever you’re in your toes, akin to your commute to the workplace, or maybe you do business from home and take the canine out for a stroll a number of occasions every day. While that is glorious and has a bunch of well being advantages, there’s extra that we will do to actually get most advantages from a brief break free from the desk.

Dynamic Pigeon Pose

Shifting typically is extremely essential. When sitting for a lot of the day uninterrupted, our physique can grow to be very accustomed to this place, inflicting muscle tone to alter, impaired circulation and a few muscular tissues can grow to be underactive, creating stiffness and discomfort. Standing and strolling recurrently is a superb behavior to have, however essential areas akin to our hips, backbone and shoulders want particular consideration, too.

Glute Bridge

That is the place small motion drills are available in helpful, or as I name them, ‘train snacks’. Train snacks are intentional 5-10 minute blocks of time the place you discover a house and transfer your physique, focusing totally on these areas listed above.

The Lateral Lunge

One of the best strategy to train snacking is to incorporate each dynamic stretches and a few muscle activation workouts. Just a few of my favourites embody cat cows, mendacity thoracic rotations and a dynamic pigeon pose. Adopted by some easy muscle activation workouts akin to a glute bridge, Hole physique maintain and lateral lunge.

Mendacity Thoracic Rotation

I like to recommend spending 5-10 minutes working by way of some or all of those actions as soon as for each 3 hours you spend sedentary. It’ll immediately make you are feeling higher!

2 Observe a well-balanced train routine

There are a whole lot of how to train. Whether or not or not it’s a sport, a gym-based routine or informal outside exercise, you merely can’t go fallacious with exercising recurrently.

While all train is helpful to your well being, you need to guarantee your routine is nicely balanced and works a number of elements of your health. Following an train plan that addresses each your cardiovascular health and your muscular tissues shall be notably essential as you strategy midlife and past for a number of totally different causes.

Ollie Thompson

As you grow old, with out intervention, your muscular tissues progressively waste away. That is referred to as sarcopenia. Analysis has proven {that a} wholesome untrained individual can lose between 3-8% of their complete muscle mass every decade after 30, leading to a energy loss upwards of fifty% between 30 and 80 years outdated. With muscle enjoying such a necessary function in so lots of our bodily features, from our motion, stability and joint energy to our metabolism, hormones and resilience towards illness. It’s secure to say, holding onto muscle performs a major function in dwelling healthily for longer.

I like to recommend you carry out at the very least 2 resistance coaching periods every week, specializing in compound workouts that concentrate on muscle muscle teams at one time, akin to a squat or row motion. Use a difficult weight and push your self, while being acutely aware of sustaining good method all through.

Cat Cow

The well being advantages of cardiovascular coaching are extra extensively identified. From protecting your coronary heart robust and sustaining good circulation to managing blood stress and in the end, decreasing the chance of sickness.

My cardio recommendation is kind of easy: deal with performing at the very least 120-minutes of reasonable depth cardio at an depth the place your respiration is elevated sufficient to sweat however you’ll be able to nonetheless nearly preserve a dialog. This doesn’t have to be a particular mode of train, you possibly can stroll, cycle and even swim. It additionally doesn’t have to be carried out all of sudden! 3×45 minute periods are likely to go well with lots of my purchasers. Take a digital assembly outdoors, stroll the canine or cycle to the workplace. You’ll be stunned how shortly the minutes add up.


3 Maintain your sleep

We’ve spoken about shifting typically, we’ve additionally touched on following an train routine. Nonetheless, to have the vitality to maneuver typically, to deal with train and motivation to stick to wholesome dietary habits, you will need to get ample sleep.

Sleep is the spine to your well being. When sleep is compromised, it’ll impression all areas of your life. From bodily efficiency and vitality ranges to psychological readability, hormone stability and even lowering your physique’s capability to battle off sickness.

Sleep deprivation impacts practically each physiological operate within the physique. In reality, analysis has proven that simply 4 nights in a row of 4 hours of sleep per evening can go away your cognitive operate at par with having pulled an all-nighter! You may think about the place that may go away your vitality, focus and total well being.

Ollie Thompson

To optimise each your sleep high quality and amount, it’s essential to take care of good sleep hygiene.

Listed below are 6 key elements of wholesome sleep hygiene:

– Regularity: Hold your sleep and wake time as constant as you’ll be able to, even on weekends the place ‘social jetlag’ can grow to be a problem.

– Atmosphere: Hold your bed room darkish, as quiet as you’ll be able to and never too heat. A cooler room shall be finest as our core physique temperature requires a small drop to float into sleep.

– Caffeine: Keep away from caffeinated drinks after 2pm. Excessive ranges of caffeine in your system within the night will considerably scale back your sleep high quality and amount.

– Napping: In the event you’re going to take a nap, keep away from doing so after 5pm to take care of sleep stress construct up.

– Lighting: Keep away from utilizing vibrant overhead lighting after 8pm. Stick with lamps and low heat lighting to forestall disturbances with melatonin manufacturing.

– Night Routine: Adopting a brief routine to wind down earlier than mattress could be actually helpful, particularly should you’re very ‘switched on’ within the evenings from work or different stressors. A heat bathe adopted by a number of easy stretches and 10-minutes of studying can work wonders.

There you’ve got it! Three key fundamentals to make sure that you thrive at 40 and past, and optimise your total nicely being, lengthy into the longer term.

Go to and comply with Ollie on Instagram @olliethompsonhealth

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