Fitness After 40

Fitness expert and author of Real Life Fitness Carey Long launched his first national advertising campaign in the form of a 30-minute infomercial which began airing in March on ABC and Fox. The spot promotes his fitness program for men and women over 40, encouraging them to take control of their fitness destiny so they may live longer and enjoy a better quality of life.

If you are new to fitness plans, there are lots of them out there – but keep in mind that most of them are geared towards the younger generation, he said. P 90x, Insanity, etc. are great programs, but they are extreme and not for beginners.

Long, a licensed physical therapy assistant (LPTA) and certified personal trainer with the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA-CPT), has worked in the fitness industry for more than 20 years. He is currently the PT Director for Spectrums at Southdowns in Baton Rouge.

Early in his career, he focused on a younger demographic – those wanting beach bodies and big muscles. Following the death of his parents, he made a personal and professional shift from focusing on outside appearances to increasing life expectancy.

My mother died at 61, and my father died at 64, from heart complications he said. My main goal was to live past age 64, and that became the focus of my book Real Life Fitness.

Long altered his exercise routine and diet which reshaped his body. He lost 40 lbs., going from a big bodybuilder’s physique to one resembling a lean Olympic swimmer.

It’s not about being ripped. It’s about being fit, healthy and finding the balance between including exercise into your daily routine, eating healthier and accepting some responsibility for your future life.

Once a common thought that after 40 it was too late to get in shape, he said, but science has proven otherwise. 

In fact, numerous studies have shown that older people respond very favorably to both strength training and aerobic exercise. Most fitness experts agree that a 15-20 year decrease in biological age can be achieved with simple lifestyle changes. There can be a huge difference between biological age and chronological age.

Long said don’t put limits on yourself just because you’re over 40. He said your fitness program should be based more on your goals and fitness level than how old you are.

For four years I was the Louisiana and Greater Baton Rouge Senior Olympic Fitness Challenge Coordinator and had the privilege of being around active 70 to 90-plus-year-olds, he said. So yes, I do believe whole heartedly that it’s never too late. I have had clients that were in their early to mid 80s that decided they wanted to compete in the senior Olympics and performed brilliantly.

Here are 10 tips for getting in shape, based on his book Real Life Fitness:

1. Get a routine physical to make sure you have no underlying problems that exercise might expose. A routine physical often includes having your blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood glucose levels checked. Check with your health care professional to see what other screenings you need to stay healthy.

2. Set goals. You need a road map to get to where you’re going. In the gym, you need a fitness program such Real Life Fitness and/or a trainer to help you get real results, reduce your risk of injury and improve your overall health. If you work with a personal trainer, check for one who is nationally certified from reliable organizations such as the National Academy of Sports Medicine, Aerobics and Fitness Association of America, American Fitness Professional and Associates, International Sports Sciences Association and other organizations that certify personal trainers. It’s also a good idea to see if you’re trainer is CPR certified, should the need arise. A personal trainer should also fit your emotional needs. This is especially true for first-time exercisers.

3. Join a gym and go consistently. Treat exercise the way you treat other priorities in life. After all, nothing is more important than your health. Drop by several fitness clubs that are convenient to where you spend the most of your time (work, home, etc.) and check out the vibe you get when entering the club. Is reception friendly, is it clean, and do you feel comfortable after your visit? If not, you are less likely to stick with any program or system.

4. Purchase proper attire for working out. What was considered standard exercise attire in the 80s would be a faux pas nowadays.

Long offers a start-up package for new exercisers, including a:

               Proper fitting for training shoes that will support your feet

               Heart-rate monitoring device to use during cardio training

               Physical assessment and goal-setting plan to reach fitness goals

               Two-week membership to Spectrum at Southdowns

5. Do warm-up exercises before EVERY workout session. Warming-up stimulates blood flow to the muscles increasing flexibility and range of motion. It also gets the mind mentally prepared for working out. If there is pain during the warm-up, it’s a signal to be extra cautious during the workout. Long says: Always pay attention to what the body is telling you. Some days you are going to feel incredible and should try to push harder during the workout while other days you are not going to have the same vigor in the gym. Give what you can that day.

6. Always stretch after exercising. Stretching is the most widely neglected aspect of overall fitness, but one of the most important aspects, especially for older exercisers who have lost flexibility over the years and may be more susceptible to injuries. Pictures and descriptions of both warm-up and stretching exercises are included in Real Life Fitness.

7. Practice good weight-lifting form. The basis for a good lifting technique is having strong posture during the exercise.

             Always use controlled movements. If you feel joint pain during an exercise, STOP! Adjust the exercise or seek medical attention if pain persists. Pushing through pain only leads to injuries.

              Keep your spine straight, don’t arch the back.

              Do not hunch your shoulders or round them.

              Never allow your joints to lock out.


8. Give yourself enough recovery time. As you age, you need more recovery time after exercising. Give your body the time it needs and it will get stronger and healthier.

9. Start slowly and build up gradually. Don’t push yourself too hard, too fast. Slowly and gradually progress from your existing fitness level.

10. Incorporate good nutritional habits. Adding more whole grains, vegetables and fruit is another must-do. A way to improve your health immensely is to eat 5 to 7 servings of vegetables and fruit, drink 8 to 10 glasses of water as well as lessen the amount of white flour and sugar consumed each day.

A final word: Regular consistent exercise benefits both mind and body.

A study published by Dr. Ronald Peterson, director of the Alzheimer’s Research Center at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., said: 

Regular physical exercise is probably the best means we have of preventing Alzheimer’s disease today.

To learn more about Carey his Long and Real Life Fitness program, visit

www.careylongfitness.com and visit his blog at http://www.weeklycitizen.com/community/blogs/fitness_made_simple.


                    campaign in the form of a 30-minute infomercial which began airing in March on ABC and Fox. The sp

Original Story Here


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  1. Reply

    Fitness Tips…? Well, Im 16 and weigh 306 pounds at about six feet in height. I just started Varsity Football for my school. Well, my coach told me that he will prefer me at a weight of 280 by about July. I just wanted any and all tips that someone can think of that will hep me with my goal and increase my football skills. Hopefullly, improving my speed, explosion, agility, strength, etc,. Is this goal attainable and what do you reccomend I do?

      • HealthNut
      • June 22, 2012


      I’ve tried so many different diets in the last 10 years that I can say now, they don’t work!
      A few months ago, I came across a great product for weight loss (it’s actually a colon cleanse) and like many others I was skeptical about it. But I really wanted to lose weight and I tried it (it’s 100% natural). The results were excellent. I lost about 20 pounds in 2 months with this detox. That’s why I recommend you check this product at http://www.thin-quick.us where they have a free trial and you only pay $4.95 shipping and handling.
      Good luck!

  2. Reply

    I Want To Lose A Few Kilos But Not A Heap, Dieting And Fitness Tips..? I weigh 58 kilos, and I don’t really want to lose too much weight, maybe 5 or 6 kilos, but I mostly just want to tone up. Do you know any dieting/fitness tips? I’m going to the gym 5 times a week, and on the days I’m not there I’m going for a run. Any tips on what to spend my time on at the gym? Thank you x

      • HealthNut
      • June 22, 2012

      Dear Isy,

      One thing you need to understand is that you have to work hard if you want to change the shape of your body. That means a balance of medium-high intensity cardio exercise along with challenging strength training workouts.

      For weight loss, you’ll need to get about 5 cardio workouts each week at a medium-high intensity for at least 30 minutes. If you’re a beginner, it’s best to start slow and work your way up but, if you’re in good condition and have no restrictions, challenging yourself with harder workouts is the best way to burn more calories. Interval training is a good choice because studies show you continue to burn calories even after you’ve stopped exercising.

      In addition to your cardio workouts, you’ll need to lift weights for all your muscle groups at least 2 non-consecutive days a week. And, by lifting weights, that means using enough weight that you can ONLY complete the desired number of reps. For example, if you’re doing 12 bicep curls, you need to use enough weight that you can only do 12 bicep curls and not one more. Most people don’t lift enough weight to really challenge their muscles.

      What you need to engage in is a well balanced all rounded diet with considerable physical exertion over a prolonged time period. Food can be broken down into 5 major groups. These groups are carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals and water. The body needs varying amounts of these types of food so that the adequate amount of nutrients is supplied to the body. A well-balanced diet does not mean an equal amount of each type of food, as our body requires more of some nutrients than others.

      Each type of food plays a significant role in our body but excesses or deficiencies of certain types of food can also harm the body and produce a negative impact on our health.

      It is very important that we know how much of each type of food we are supposed to consume and that we eat in a sensible way. This means eating regular meals at “least” three times a day and drinking plenty of water, but what I would suggest is breaking it down to 5 smaller meals a day and having your last solid meal before 6pm after that you are only allowed to have pure low fat milk a mug or two would be a good idea to cut down on excessive cravings.

      Hope this answers your question.

  3. Reply

    Can Anyone Here Give Me Some Good Fitness Tips On Yahoo Messenger? I am completely clueless about fitness…
    can anyone help?

      • HealthNut
      • June 22, 2012

      Walk at least a mile a day. Get rest drink plenty of water & fluids. Avoid junk food. Eat at least 23 g of fiber a day.

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