After reading this article, the health and fitness professional will
Recognize that health behavior choices during midlife, that align with the dimensions of wellness and include exercise, can greatly affect one’s daily function and well-being and increase the chance for successful and active aging;
Conceptually reframe functional fitness, adding cognitive and psychosocial components to physical domains, and redefine it as functional well-being, which is operationalized as having adequate daily productivity with vitality and vigor while experiencing minimal stress that collectively enables optimal function;
Appreciate that midlife challenges often include changes in sex hormones and body composition, newly diagnosed chronic diseases/conditions, and complicated social roles, which together result in high stress levels and reduced sleep quality that can challenge multiple domains of one’s wellness;
When working with midlife individuals, understand that (a) an increased focus on strength training and exercise intensity is important to achieve benefits in less time; (b) daily movement is essential to both function and feeling better; (c) exercise is only one component of physical wellness; and (d) health behaviors are often interrelated.