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Everything “Over 40’s” need to know about returning to fitness.

Updated: Aug 2, 2023

Are you worried about returning to group exercise classes after a break or illness? Maybe you’re concerned you won’t be able to manage, won't be strong or flexible enough or worry that everyone else will know what they’re doing or just be better than you?

Nothing could be further from the truth!

Most people in class have experienced this at some time or another, even more so since the COVID pandemic.

Over 40s Fitness Zestforlifefitness Pilates Strength Cornwall

It’s true, we all experience “detraining” when we stop exercising. Don’t we notice it when we go on holiday and the first few classes feel like wading through treacle?!

Alarmingly we can start to lose our fitness levels within 2 weeks of not exercising and returning to fitness can feel terribly daunting.

What’s intriguing is certain elements of fitness are less susceptible to detraining than others.

Strength & Power

Strength & Power can be more resistant to detraining. A few weeks away will only result in a relatively small decline.

Endurance & Cardiovascular Fitness

Endurance & Cardiovascular fitness appears to be more sensitive to decline, and can reduce significantly after only a few weeks away.


Flexibility is also particularly susceptible to detraining, with many people reporting a pronounced loss in flexibility after only a few weeks.


All is not lost though!

The good news is, reversibility in fitness can be turned around as long as you take it steady & build up your strength and fitness levels gradually.

Just bear in mind, everybody’s bodies are different so it's important to be kind to yourself & give yourself realistic, achievable goals.

Key Takeaways....

If you’re away from your usual routine, try to incorporate some simple to achieve cardiovascular exercise such as walking or swimming to top up your fitness levels. No equipment needed just get out there & do it.

A few stretches to keep you limbered up are also easy to fit in when you’re away and probably more in tune with your state of mind if you’re recovering from illness or on a vacation. Also they’re super portable.

Then keep up the good work by joining a class where you are welcomed warmly to keep those good intensions on track!

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