Lift light and often
When it comes to rejuvenating muscles, resistance training is key. “While many of the adults in our survey reported exercising, cardio was really preferred. Only about a quarter of those people are actually lifting weights,” says Abbott’s registered dietitian Tiffany Dewitt. “Evidence has really shown that doing those exercises can help you maintain your muscle.” Lift light and often, and increase your reps and weight as soon as any one exercise begins to seem too simple. Focus on the entire body—think arms, chest, back, legs, and abdominals, and don’t rule out strength-building classes like yoga and Pilates. Here are ways to get stronger arms without having to lift weights.
Double up on protein
iStock/Willie B. Thomas
In the Abbott-AARP survey, 62 percent of adults believed they get enough protein, and 70 percent reported increasing their intake of high-protein foods to minimize their risk of muscle loss. But interestingly, only 17 percent said they knew how much protein they needed. So what’s best for adults? Up to 1.5 grams of protein per kilogram of weight (or for an 150 pound person, 102 grams). That’s about double the amount recommended for people under 50, who under general circumstances only need between 0.6 and 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram. Dewitt recommends speaking with your doctor about protein intake and goals. Here are smart ways to load up on lean protein.