Generation X is one of those generations that seems to get lost between the very outspoken baby boomers and millennials. Yet, we still have some very unique demands from our world and are more than willing to create services and systems that support us. It’s one of the reasons why our generation is so innovative and productive. We don’t see what we need so we create it. When it comes to health and fitness, there are some concepts that are vital to most of us and they play an important role in our health and well-being.
If we’re all about going hard and getting the most out of our workout, whether we’re hitting the CrossFit Workout of the Day or we’re out running ten miles on the trails. After a hard workout, we’ve learned (perhaps the hard way) that recovery is important. Recovery means blending rest, mobility and stretching, as well as nutrition into your plan. Of course there’s no one size fits all recovery program.
However, it is important to consume some calories after your workout so that you have protein to mend your muscles. We’re also aging so rest days need to be built in to prevent long term damage and potential injury. Mobility means investing in a foam roller and learning how to use it. Kelly Starrett’s MobilityWod.com is also a great resource.
The term “functional movement” is misused and therefore misunderstood. It doesn’t mean that the movement replicates a movement found in real life – though it often does. A functional movement uses several major muscle groups at the same time. For example, a biceps curl is not a functional movement. You’re only working your biceps. However, a pushup is a functional movement. You’re using all of your arm, shoulder, and core muscles to perform one movement.
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
Whether you’re training to get a great bod, you want fast results in less time, or you want opt improve your marathon time, HIIT has a purpose in your fitness program. HIIT is can be broadly applied. You can do interval sprints, interval pushups, jump roping, or just about anything. The concept is to exercise at or near 100% effort level for a short duration, anywhere from 20 seconds to a minute, and then to drop down to a moderate effort for a similar amount of time. The Tabata is a common approach. You alternate intense effort for 20 seconds with moderate effort or rest for 10 seconds. You repeat this cycle 8 times, or four minutes of exercise.
Variety and Variability
One of the reasons why gym attendance is declining and CrossFit and Boot Camps are becoming so popular is because of the variety they provide. Online training programs also offer that variety that Generation X craves. This is easy to add to your lifestyle. Create your own program that alternates types of workouts (for example yoga, strength, and cardio). You can also try CrossFit or find an online training program that fits your needs.
Meal Planning and Nutrition
The typical Generation X member is busy but wants to eat in a way that is both healthy and delicious. Meal planning programs, and shopping services, have been growing in popularity. These programs plan your meals for you and deliver completed shopping lists and recipes to your inbox. They can also deliver pre-made meals or meals ready to prepare. And of course most major grocery stores now offer home delivery. These services make it much easier for a busy Gen X to eat well.
As a member of Gen X, you’re probably familiar with all or some of these concepts and needs. Use this list as a guideline to help you get everything you need for your own personal well-being plan. Next time we’ll take a closer look at the importance, for some, of a social connection and how to get that regardless of your exercise program.