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How I Created My Healthiest Body in My Fifties

You can implement these highly effective ideas for creating your healthiest body yet – even in your fifties and beyond.

Here, I explain exactly how I stay lean, strong, and flexible in my fifties.

I outline – specifically – how you, too, might reduce your own body’s fat stores and create your healthiest body yet.

Each Person Has a Different Body Type

People can look beautiful in a variety of shapes and sizes; however, science is helping us to understand that inflammation accelerates aging – and therefore it’s usually healthiest for people to keep their overall percentage of body fat at lower levels.

I often keep my body fat anywhere from an 11% (during cutting phases) to 14% (during bulking phases) ratio:

  • Cutting phases are when active people reduce their calories to lose fat, even though they know they might lose a bit of muscle, too.
  • Bulking phases are when active people up their calories to increase muscularity, even though they know they might gain a little bit of fat, too.

Many athletes stay too long in their bulking phase (their cutting phases tend to be brief periods once or twice a year).

This goes against much of the latest science I’ve read, which asserts that genes respond positively when we eat fewer calories.

My primary motivation for working out and eating right isn’t to benefit my appearance – although that’s a positive side-effect. My main motivations are longevity and healthspan – to extend the number of years I am healthy, happy, and mobile.

dane findley fifties fitness healthiest body

I happen to be male, and though I often keep my body fat at approximately 11%, women can do quite well keeping their fat percentages as high as 19% (more on this below).

My Weekly Workout Regimen

I exercise almost every day. However, most days, I exercise only lightly.

Two or three days a week are my “big” days, where I push myself a bit harder than what is comfortable.

I have a few secrets for getting the most results from my workouts:

  • I pay attention to my breathing.
  • I don’t scroll through Instagram or send texts on my phone while I’m working out. (That’s weak sauce, people.)
  • I set an intention for my workout and try to stay connected to that intention throughout my session.
  • If I’m training with weights, I visualize – in my mind – the muscle group I’m targeting.
  • If I’m running outdoors, I leave my Air Pods at home. I remain mindful, paying attention to my own body while also allocating a bit of awareness for dogs, cars, and potholes.
  • I cross-train! (This is my biggest secret). I do a different type of workout each day. Pilates, walking, swimming drills, weights, running, yoga, or higher-intensity interval training. By cross-training, my body is less likely to acclimate, and I stay in the results zone. This way, my body is always responding.
  • I take recovery more seriously than the workout itself. Sleep, prioritized nutrition, and a low-stress lifestyle are my keys to recovery.

Eating for Lean Strength in Your Fifties and Beyond

Because of the negative impact of inflammation on the body’s cells, it is sometimes healthier for people to have a smaller waist size.

Typically, I’m asked several times a week, “How do you stay fit?”

I usually answer, “It’s what I don’t eat.”

My answer is the most honest one I can give; however, it usually surprises the asker.

People seem to expect me to say something more like, “I do 100 crunches every morning.”

But, really, one’s daily diet is the most significant lifestyle factor for improving health and appearance.

It’s not the only factor, but it is the biggest.

To become fit in my fifties, I’ve relied on fundamental principles based on recent advances in scientific research:

  • genetics is not always inevitable; genes – beneficial genes or harmful genes – can be turned on or off simply by following specific lifestyle protocols.
  • inflammation is a primary cause of accelerated aging and disease; among the easiest ways to reduce inflammation is via key nutritional habits.
  • for purposes of cellular health and DNA repair, the human body can benefit by daily consumption of up to 9 (loose) cups of vegetables a day (both cooked and raw) – a combination of leafy greens, cruciferous, and rainbow colors.
  • almost everything you eat either encourages or discourages inflammation.
  • cancer cells can feed on carbohydrates (particularly simple sugars) and excess protein; cancer cells appear unable to feed themselves on ketones – the caloric energy from healthy fats.
  • an anti-inflammatory diet is even more about what you don’t eat than what you do eat.
  • the quantity and quality of daily calories matter; most people underestimate the quantity and overestimate the quality; the ratio of macronutrients (daily grams of fat, carbs, and protein consumed) also matters.
  • after making sure the number of calories and ratio of macronutrients is within ideal ranges, what matters next is increasing micronutrients while decreasing anti-nutrients; usually, that means finding out which foods your body finds uniquely irritating and avoiding them.

Highly Strategic Nutrition

It’s essential to track your calories a couple of times a year.

But only tracking your calories is old-school.

This isn’t 1972. To optimize your wellness, you’ll also need to periodically track:

  • your macros (ratio of fats, protein, and carbs)
  • and inflammation (which foods inspire an inflammatory response inside your body versus foods that enhance your health).

As always, ask your own medical doctor before making any significant changes to your eating or movement patterns.

Water and Hydration

My hydration water contains electrolytes, including sea salt and trace minerals.

I make this right before I go to bed each night and keep it on my nightstand so that if I wake up in the middle of the night, I can have a drink.

Whatever is left in the morning when I wake up, I finish off right away.

Among the biggest mistakes people make when attempting keto or a lower-carb diet is forgetting to replenish electrolytes:

  • When you don’t eat a lot of carbs, your body will probably not retain the amount of water you’re accustomed to – which is a good thing as long as you remember to replenish lost minerals.
  • Believe it or not, consistent clean-eating can sometimes result in insufficient salt, which can cause problems – cramping in the legs, feet, or neck, for example.
  • We’re conditioned to think of salt as the enemy, but if you’re no longer eating the Standard Modern Diet, salt becomes your friend – not your enemy.

The solution is fairly simple – I recommend having two bottles in your kitchen – Pink Himalayan Rock Salt and Redmond Real Salt – a cleaner sea salt from a dry seabed in Utah (created before modern pollution existed).

I also add to my hydration water a drop or two of Biotics Vitamin D (for those weeks I haven’t had enough fresh air and sunlight), and I sprinkle in some Muscle Feast Hydrate, an unflavored powder.

woman putting in ear buds as she prepares for exercise

It’s been fashionable over the last decade for people to have warm lemon water or lime water upon waking.

However, when you eat an anti-inflammatory diet, you’re already eating a lot of alkaline foods, so there’s probably no need to extra-alkalinize yourself with lemon water.

Ironically, if anything, you might need to be more acidic to help you digest those healthy fats you’ve started eating.

Also, I’m a bit skeptical that the human body intended to consume citrus every single day for years upon end.

If you love your morning lemon water, you might consider switching to every other day – or perhaps alternating with apple cider vinegar, which has been proven to reduce fat stores in certain situations (see sources at end of the article).

Homemade Tea Latte

The good medicine that tea provides has been relentlessly proven. I like to start out my morning with a big tea latte made from:

  • decaffeinated green tea
  • a 1/2 teaspoon each of sprouted rice protein and whey protein isolate
  • all mixed in some unsweetened coconut milk inside my kitchen blender.

Small Green Smoothie

Most people radically underestimate the number of vegetables they consume in a typical week. Green smoothies provide a simple solution. I make my own.

Coconut “Yogurt” with Sprouted Seeds and Nuts

Cultured coconut milk is a highly effective, non-dairy way to deliciously get your non-dairy, fermented, probiotic food in each day.

Get it unsweetened and tart, then add some sprouted nuts and seeds, blueberries, and cinnamon as a topping.

My favorite brand of coconut “yogurt” is So Delicious. But if you want to save money, you can make your own in your Instant Pot pressure cooker.

54 year-old athlete achieving his healthiest body.

Sweet Potato with Ghee

Once a week, I peel a big sweet potato, chop it up, and steam (or boil) it. Only takes a few minutes.

When you refrigerate cooked sweet potato, it becomes a beneficial prebiotic, resistant starch that’s not digested in the stomach or small intestine. It reaches your colon intact, where it can feed the good bacteria.

Healthy gut biome, for the win!

For me, sweet potatoes are helpful in so many ways that I no longer think of them as regular food; I think of them as medicine.

You can reheat a small serving of sweet potato with your dinner several nights a week.

Strategic Snack Bars on Heavy Workout Days

On heavier workout days, you might need an extra 200 or 300-calorie bump, and – if you’re out on the road and don’t have the time to stop for fresh, whole foods – a snack bar can be a logical choice.

Though I like to limit the number of processed foods I eat (to me, processed foods are anything that has previously traveled down a conveyor belt in a manufacturing plant), I will once in a while have a snack bar.

However, I choose my snack bar carefully.

Most snack bars are just candy bars in disguise. But some can help you out in a pinch. Read the ingredients carefully.

The No-Frills Dinner

For dinner, I typically have super salads.

My super salad is usually a giant bowl of greens topped with diced vegetables (including avocado) and meat – grass-fed bison or free-range turkey.

The dressing is simple: olive oil, apple cider vinegar or lemon juice, and sea salt.

How to Determine If Your Current Weight Is a Healthy Weight

What is the exact healthy weight for your body?

Reaching your ideal weight is often a result of making minor changes to your daily habits.

But how do you figure out how much you’re supposed to weigh?

healthy weight VS current weight

“What Is a Healthy Weight for Me?”

By knowing how much fat is on your body today, you’ll be able to determine what weight loss techniques are working for you and which are not moving the needle. Knowing this will better assist you in reaching a healthy weight.

Tracking your weight, BMI, and body composition is a lot smarter now, thanks to affordable advances in technology. Available today are 2nd-generation wireless smart scales and full-body analyzers – that are compatible with iOS and Android Devices.

The Body Mass Index or BMI is a system used to measure your percentage of body fat and to determine if you are at a healthy weight – using your height, weight, age, and gender.

The results of the index will tell you, generally, if you’ve got a healthy body fat percentage and what your ideal ratio of fat-to-muscle probably is.

Though other methods are more accurate for learning what your current percentage of body fat is, the body mass index formula can still be a convenient way to get a quick, general idea (if you want to know exactly what your body fat is, you can visit a scanner x-ray service, such as Body Spec, and they will provide you with the most accurate figure available).

It is important to remember that each human is different, and your ideal weight is whatever ratio of fat to muscle helps your body perform uniquely well.

In other words, your healthy weight might be very different than someone else’s.

“How Much Fat Do I Need to Lose?”

There are plenty of free BMI calculators on the web that will tell you your approximate Body Mass Index, but you can even do the math yourself:

BMI = Weight-in-pounds / (Height-in-inches x Height-in-inches) x 703

You can then compare your BMI number to the list below:

  • 18.4 or lower: Underweight
  • 18.5 to 24.9: Normal weight
  • 25 to 29.9: Overweight
  • 30 or higher: Obese

Of course, our bodies are all different genetically, and this calculation doesn’t consider how much of your body is actually fat and not muscle (and is, therefore, not always suitable for athletes).

The Mirror Deceives – Here’s How to REALLY Tell if You’ve Become Thinner or Heavier

It’s vital to keep an objective eye on one’s body fat.

The mirror deceives.

Many of us think we’re thinner than we really are, while others see unsightly fat where there is none.

Excessive belly fat can signify a sign of toxicity, inflammation, and potential future health challenges, so it’s good to know where you stand in terms of your fat-to-muscle ratio.

Trying to determine the exact number of pounds that you should weigh is tricky.

Standard bathroom scales weigh your muscle tissue as well as your fat tissue – even though a pound of muscle takes up less space than a pound of fat (and looks a whole lot better).

Though many people use the BMI as an indicator (check out your Body Mass Index with a free online fat calculator or contact your gym to see if they offer this service), the BMI method is often not suitable for people of extreme heights or people who strength-train at the gym – because it doesn’t account for muscle tissue or bone mass.

How to Figure Out Your Healthiest Weight in Your Fifties

The absolute best way to determine your ideal weight is, oddly, not to focus on pounds at all but instead on your body’s percentage of fat:

  • in most cases, it’s healthiest for men to have body fat between 6% and 17%;
  • for women, it’s usually best to have body fat between 14% and 24%.
mature, fit couple bicycling together outdoors, becoming their healthiest

More important than which method you use to determine your level of body fat is that you stick with the same measurement method.

For example, if one method reveals that you are at 28% body fat, well, maybe you are really 27% or maybe 29%, but what will probably be accurate is how much you’ve gained or lost.

If it says you’ve lost 6% or gained 6%, that number will probably be accurate if you’re using the same measurement method as you used before.

  • Previously, I shared how there is a simple formula for figuring out how to lose a pound each week permanently;
  • and I’ve also explained how preparing internally for change can help to easily make external changes to our appearance, including helping us to lose fat and get into shape;
  • I’ve also previously revealed that certain menu items, such as freshly made green smoothies, can be startling in their ability to reduce belly fat specifically.

There are two tools that you’ll need to help you track your fat loss. One costs about $50, and the other costs about $1.

Get the Healthiest Bathroom Scale with a BIA Feature

In the old days, we could only use calipers – or unique scales that weighed us in water – to determine our actual percentage of body fat.

Fortunately, today we have other options. Many bathroom scales that you can buy today at your home-accessories store include a BIA feature (Bioelectric Impedance Analysis) that reveals your current level of fat.

Your hydration levels may create a margin of error in the figure, but if you measure at the same time of day (such as when you wake up in the morning after using the bathroom), that can help to minimize the already small risk of error.


Get a Measuring Tape

You’ll need to get the cloth or soft-plastic measuring tape that tailors use (not the metal ones that handymen use) to measure your waistline.

The measuring tape won’t tell you your body fat percentage, but it will tell you how many inches you’ve gained or lost in your waist, and in some ways, this is the healthiest information to have.

When I measure my waist area, I measure it in two places:

  1. the skinniest part of my waist, right underneath my bottom rib, when I suck my stomach in as hard as I can;
  2. the widest part of my waist – I run the tape over the center of my belly button and then around the broadest part of the “love handle” area.

Write down both numbers each time you measure, and you will have an accurate idea of whether or not you’re gaining or losing fat in your waistline.

Research reveals that a slimmer waistline means longer life, so this is an important area to track meticulously.

You’ll perhaps think I’m kidding, but sometimes what’s also helpful is to keep one pair of your favorite skinny jeans in your closet.

When you pull those jeans on, how well those jeans fit – or don’t – will give you a fast indication of your current fat percentage that is strangely more accurate than what the most expensive lab equipment would tell you.

Do Smoothies Make You Fat?

Whether smoothies make you thinner or fatter depends on the smoothie.

A freshly made green smoothie can help you reach your healthiest weight.

On the other hand, when some people say “smoothie,” what they really mean is some low-quality, overly sweetened powder from a can they got at the grocery store, mixed with milk and a banana.

Those kinds of smoothies can make you fatter.

But a daily fresh green smoothie made correctly can help you get leaner, stronger, and look your healthiest.

Do Quantity or the Quality Matter More in Your Healthiest Calories?

There are so many differing opinions on whether the number of calories or the quality of calories is more critical for trimming down and achieving a healthy weight.

The truth is, simply: both.

People who still believe that only the number of calories matters do not understand inflammation.

Going to workout and want the highest return on your time and energy investment? You can’t beat higher-intensity interval training for improving fitness, sculpting muscle, and calorie-burning fat loss! In this video, I share 14 exercise ideas for your next HIIT session.

Many of the modern world’s most common diseases are linked to chronic inflammation.

Yes, excess calories can convert to fat, but what is also true is that the healthier you are, the better and more efficiently your metabolism works.

To keep your body’s various systems running optimally, you need to stay out of their way and let them do their job. A diet full of inflammatory foods can impede your systems’ optimal functioning:

“…inflammation is the body’s natural response to irritants. When the irritants don’t let up because of diet… the immune system can spiral out of control and increase the risk for disease. A growing body of research is revealing how abdominal fat and an unhealthy diet can lead to inflammation. Some scientists are investigating how certain components in foods might help. Dietary fiber, for instance, may play a protective role against inflammation” ~ Laura Landro / WSJ

It’s a good idea to periodically take a fresh look at your daily habits: what are you eating and drinking?

You have this idea of what you consume daily, but is it accurate?


Appear at Your Healthiest

Up your daily joy levels!

You can look better and feel better now than you ever have before.

You can have more physical energy, experience more joyful feelings, tone your body with lean muscle, and shed excess body fat.

No matter what your current age is, you deserve to live a life that is joyful, meaningful, and as exciting as you want it to be.

Many hours of research and work have gone into my weekly email updates, presented to you in an easily readable style.

When you subscribe to my free Quality of Life Newsletter:

  • each week you’ll receive a simple success strategy that will help you to raise your quality of life to its healthiest.
  • over time, if you “stack” enough of these small new habits, your health and lifestyle can dramatically improve.
  • you’ll also receive exclusive, instant access to my VIP area, where I keep valuable resources and tools for enhancing your daily happiness.

Achieving Your Healthiest Life

A long and fulfilling life is built one healthy week at a time.

Here’s how it works – I’m fascinated by new methods of improving daily quality of life and take great joy in sharing what I learn with you, including inspirational findings on:

  1. psychology and the human spirit;
  2. flow or organization;
  3. healthiest functional fitness moves and the latest nutritional research.

Life Quality is a broad and highly enriching topic. It would be impossible for every single email to be directly and mind-blowingly relevant to your life when it arrives in your inbox.

I consider it a great success if only one of my complimentary messages each month helps you improve your life quality so you experience more daily happiness.

  • At least once each week, an inspirational email message will await you in the morning – strategically designed to help move you toward new levels of health and happiness.
  • As a subscriber, you will be waking up to wellness and starting each week in an ideal way.
  • You’ll be providing yourself with the ongoing motivation to make lasting improvements to your daily lifestyle.

This is not a strict diet to commit to, nor an ongoing exercise routine or a self-help manual to read and forget. These are weekly incentives with recommended action steps.

Anyone can adopt healthier habits that last for a month or two.

The true challenge is to adopt healthier habits that will “stick” for a lifetime.

Researchers have determined that the reason people fall off the health wagon – and are unable to significantly raise the baseline for their overall health – is that they don’t have adequate weekly encouragement and preparation.

Dane Findley Quality of Life Updates Fit Over 50

Free Weekly Updates = Feeling and Looking Your Healthiest

When you don’t have good health, you suddenly realize how foundational it truly is.

When you have excellent health, anything is possible.

When you are extremely healthy, and the people you love are incredibly healthy, life is at its sweetest and most exhilarating.

  • when you invest in your health, you’re investing in a passionate and hopeful future
  • when your health improves, so does your personal potency and your ability to make a positive difference – both in the world at large and in the lives of your loved ones

Becoming healthier isn’t all that difficult if you know what to do and in what sequence to do it. My weekly updates will help.

Becoming Your Healthiest Means Small Steps Toward Ambitious Goals

Outstanding health is achieved incrementally.

It’s really the small things you do each day – often without even realizing it – that determine your overall health.

A slight improvement here, a tiny adjustment there — after a while, those new small habits, when done consistently, begin to add up to profound health and longevity.

The latest research reveals that it takes 60 to 65 days to implement positive new habits until they become second nature.

Taking our cue from the evidence, we have created our how-to methodology in a series of gentle “nudges” that will help you become the new, improved, healthier you.

At least once each week, an inspirational message will shoot out to you. There are 48 specific action steps within these messages, shared in 12 distinct phases – each phase builds smartly on the one before it.

The entire (free) program utilizes the latest findings in positive psychology and performance – to help you permanently increase your strength, energy, and joy.

The Quality of Life Newsletter will help you feel better. If you implement the recommended action steps within the messages, the cumulative effect is a happier, more enlightened you – a powerful person who becomes more connected with yourself.

“I am a research teacher at a highly competitive public college prep school. I began reading Dane Findley’s articles on relaxation techniques and green smoothies 5 years ago because I began to notice the effects of sustained work stress on my overall health. I have begun to integrate several of the steps in his straightforward plan and am noticing a difference in not only my health but also my overall outlook. I found that my patience has increased. My compassion for myself and others has increased. My ability to bounce back after unexpected events has increased. I persuaded my mother to subscribe to the newsletter and articles, and she also began to initiate positive changes into her lifestyle. This system is manageable and sustainable. Each step will help you find more energy and fulfillment, which will, in turn, help you permanently adopt a healthier way to live.” — Christine Bogart / Educator / Rockledge, FL

Nothing is more expensive than poor health.

Even the 3-week flu can be costly by the time you add up the doctor’s visits, the over-the-counter symptom relievers, the time off work, and other hidden costs.

  • The updates are free, so why not partake?
  • The ROI (return on investment) for the free weekly update is a priceless elevation of your own well-being and vitality.
  • Even if you were only to adopt one small positive habit, it would be well worth the cost ($.0.00) – and in this strategic program, you’ll likely adopt more than one.

“Among life’s finer sights is a person enjoying what he’s doing with his life. It delivers a bearing and an attitude that is hard to fake and it allows the person a kind of grace and resilience even in tough times. If you have not already done so, meet Dane Findley. He does good work and sets us a good example. You could do much worse than fill in your life’s white spaces with such people. (Place them in those spots freed-up because you finally cut loose some of the people who were just drains upon you. Yeah?)” — Alvin Stearns / Writer

When you start the day right, you create positive momentum. You’re taking that first important step in the right direction before most people have even woken up.

Additional Sources for Creating Your Healthiest Body:

Make Your Own Non-Dairy Coconut Yogurt – https://theprimaldesire.com/instant-pot-coconut-yogurt/

Fruit Chart: Healthiest Nutrient Profile for Produce – http://www.health-alternatives.com/fruit-nutrition-chart.html

Selection of Healthiest Superfood Powders – http://navitasnaturals.com/view_category.html

Healthiest Nutrient Macros Calculator – http://www.freedieting.com/tools/nutrient_calculator.htm

Healthiest Way to Make Your Own Almond Milk – http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Almond-Milk

Dr. Wahls on Veg Consumption and Healthiest Disease Prevention – http://www.phoenixhelix.com/2013/04/08/wahls-veggie-protocol-qa/

mature woman meditating

What Drives Cancer Cells – https://youtu.be/5x8I-ruwdm8

Healthiest Free Body Fat Calculator – http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/educational/lose_wt/BMI/bmicalc.htm

Healthiest Guidelines for Body Fat Percentages – https://www.acefitness.org/acefit/healthy-living-article/60/112/what-are-the-guidelines-for-percentage-of-body-fat

Healthiest Ways to Deal with Inflammation – http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424052702303612804577531092453590070

The Mayo Clinic on Healthiest Way to Quit Smoking – http://www.mayoclinic.org/stop-smoking/

Surprising Research Results Validate the Use of Apple Cider Vinegar for Healthiest Fat Reduction – http://www.strengthsensei.com/improve-insulin-sensitivity/  and  https://www.t-nation.com/diet-fat-loss/tip-use-vinegar-to-get-lean-build-muscle

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