Super Hero of the Month – February 2024 Santanau Das

Weightlifting After 50 Is Essential to Living Your Best Life 

Turning 50 was a big deal for me. I started asking myself a lot of questions, like How do I want to show up for myself and my family? Hunched over and hobbling around, or scooping up my grandbabies from the floor and twirling them around until I hear their tinkling laughs that melt my heart? 

For me, the answer was obvious … I want to keep up with my grandbabies! But a lot of people don’t know how to make sure they’re healthy and fit enough to live their best golden years. 

And even though the key to getting there may surprise you, the good news is … it’s totally doable. 

👉 Weightlifting after 50 is the key to ensure you get to live the life of your dreams. 👈 

Unfortunately, many people think about staying healthy and active as they age, but that’s as far as it goes. They don’t take action. 

I get it. Taking action – like overhauling your diet or improving your mindset – is daunting. Even starting to work out or going to the gym can feel scary and confusing. Especially if you haven’t done it much before. 

But like I said – it’s totally doable. Living well is within your grasp. And the key is to continue lifting weights after age 50. 

So if you’re 50 or older and have been wondering what weightlifting can do for you, this blog is for you. And even if you’re not yet 50, read on! God-willing, we all get there eventually, my dear friend. But with the dedicated team of world-class coaches and trainers at Mo-Mentum Fitness, you won’t be alone. 

Before we dive into Das’s inspiring journey, let’s discuss why weightlifting after 50 is so important. 


The Benefits of Weightlifting After 50 

The value of weightlifting — especially after age 50 — is almost immeasurable. But here are some of the most notable benefits:

  1. Improved Muscle Mass. As we age, our muscle mass declines. Weightlifting helps counteract this, building stronger, leaner muscles. 
  2. Enhanced Bone Density and Joint Health. Lifting weights can increase bone density. Which is crucial for preventing osteoporosis and reducing joint pain. 
  3. Boosted Metabolic Rate. Did you know that muscle burns more calories than fat? Even at rest! By increasing muscle mass, weightlifting can help boost your metabolism, making it easier to maintain a healthy weight. 
  4. Positive Mental Health Effects. Regular weightlifting can improve mental health by reducing anxiety, depression, and boosting self-esteem.

Embarking on a weightlifting journey is exciting, but doing it safely is key. So let’s discuss how to safely lift weights, especially after age 50.  


Safety Tips for Weightlifting After 50 

Here are some tips to ensure you get all the benefits without the risks: 

  • Consult a Healthcare Provider. Before starting any new exercise regimen, especially weightlifting, it’s important to get a green light from your doctor. 
  • Start Slowly and Prioritize Form. Focus on mastering the correct form rather than lifting heavy weights. This approach helps prevent injuries. 
  • Incorporate Warm-Ups and Cool-Downs. Begin each session with a warm-up and end with a cool-down to keep your muscles flexible and to prevent soreness. 
  • Listen to Your Body. Remember, if something feels wrong, stop. It’s important to avoid overexertion and pay attention to what your body is telling you. 

With these benefits and safety tips in mind, let’s explore how Das applied weightlifting to transform his life after joining Mo-Mentum Fitness. 


Taking Action is the First Step 

Das is such a bright light at Mo-Mentum Fitness in Huntington Beach. And he has an amazing story to share. That’s why we’re so excited to announce Santanau Das as the Mo-Mentum Fitness Superhero of the Month for February! 

What impressed me so much about Santanau (AKA Das) is that he recognized he needed to change, and so he took action. 

Das played competitive sports like football and tennis his entire life. But old injuries made it hard for him to keep moving like he used to. 

So when he turned 50, he knew he had to make a change. With help from the trainers at Mo-Mentum Fitness, he started to exercise in a way that worked for him, and it changed his life. 

If there’s one thing you should know about Das, he believes everyone deserves to be fit and happy at any age. Let’s dive into his inspiring story!


Before Fitness: Das’s Story 

Das was always into sports. From football to tennis and even snowboarding, he loved staying active. But playing hard meant he got hurt. A lot.  

The action injured his shoulders, knees, and even his toes. These injuries made it tough for him to move like he used to. He had to change how he played tennis to avoid pain.  

Das never liked lifting weights. He even told his coach he wouldn’t do it, which he later realized was a mistake. 


A Big Wake-Up Call 

As Das got close to turning 50, he noticed something worrisome. Many of his tennis friends, who were very good players, could hardly move without pain. Das recalls, “The magic elixir was three Advil and an Icy Hot patch!” 

Das realized he was heading in the same direction.  

And the moment he knew he had to change was when doing a simple squat became painful. Squats are important in tennis to hit the ball well, and Das didn’t want to give up playing because of his pain. 


Finding a Way Back to Fitness 

Das’s wife, Kelly, was also struggling. Her back hurt so much that even simple tasks were hard. They both loved doing fun activities like skiing, hiking, and playing tennis.  

But they knew if they wanted to keep enjoying these things, they had to get stronger and healthier. They also knew they couldn’t do it alone. 

That’s when they decided to join Mo-Mentum Fitness. And we’re soooo glad they did! 

They wanted to be ready for all the adventures the next 40 years could bring. Changing their habits and making time for exercise was a big step, but they were ready to take it. 


The Power of Fitness: Das’s Transformation 

In just one year of focusing on both fitness and weightlifting at Mo-Mentum Fitness, Das saw amazing changes. He got stronger, more flexible, and felt better than he had in years. Here’s how fitness made a big difference for him: 

  • Stronger Muscles, Better Mobility. Das noticed his arms getting bigger and his legs stronger, especially his glutes. For the first time ever, he could touch his toes! This was a big deal because it meant his body was becoming more flexible.  

He even worked up to hanging on a bar for almost two minutes. Das learned that having a strong grip is important for keeping your brain sharp and avoiding problems like dementia. 

  • Playing Tennis Without Pain. Before weightlifting, Das had to change how he played tennis because of his injuries. But after getting stronger and more flexible, he didn’t need to do that anymore. He could play tennis the way he loved, without relying on painkillers or special patches. 
  • More Than Just Physical Changes. Das didn’t just see changes in his body. Weightlifting after 50 helped Das’s whole life improve.  

He had to buy new clothes because his old ones didn’t fit his stronger body. Even though he didn’t lose a lot of weight, he built muscle. It’s heavier than fat but takes up less space. This helped him feel more energetic and happy. 

  • Eating Right for Muscle Building. Das also changed how he ate. He learned from Mo-Mentum Fitness and a book called “Outlive” by Dr. Peter Attia that eating enough protein is key for building muscle. He started eating about 100 grams of protein every day. This helped him get stronger and actually changed his metabolism, making him feel even better. 

Das’s journey shows how starting a fitness program can change your body and your life in many ways. If you’re ready for this kind of transformation, joining a supportive and positive fitness community can make all the difference. When you’re accountable to others on the same journey you’re on, it propels you toward your goals. 

Next, we’ll look into how these positive changes affected Das’s health – like his blood work. And why improvements to his health convinced him to make fitness a priority now. 


Health and Happiness: The Life-Changing Benefits of Weightlifting After 50 

Das’s dedication to fitness didn’t just change how he looked and felt. It also had a big impact on his health. Here’s what happened: 


Big Wins in Blood Work 

One of the most exciting changes for Das was seeing his blood work improve. His family has a history of health issues, so he was thrilled to find his efforts paying off.  

His triglycerides dropped to the lowest they’ve ever been, and his cholesterol levels improved significantly. He’s still waiting on some tests, but with his new diet rich in lean proteins and yogurt, he’s optimistic about the results. 


More Than Physical Health 

Fitness became a priority for Das because he wants to enjoy life to the fullest. He dreams of  

  • traveling the world, 
  • playing tennis into his 80s,  
  • and diving as long as he can. 

Fitness is his way of making sure he can do all these things without pain or limitations. Continuing to lift weights in his 50’s has been an integral part of his transformation. And what makes Das truly happy and at peace is knowing he’s investing in his future. This mindset allows him to enjoy his favorite activities without restrictions. And he’s even taken up new hobbies, like surfing.

My favorite quote from Das is when he said, “I worked very hard to get to where I am and don’t want to see the pyramids in Egypt or the Sydney Opera House [from] a wheelchair.” Love this! 


Feeling Better Than Ever 

Compared to a year ago, Das feels like a different person. His endurance has always been good — thanks to cardio — but now he’s stronger and more flexible, too. He can do squats, lunges, pull-ups, and more, which he couldn’t do before. This new strength has made a world of difference in his life. 


Why Mo-Mentum Fitness Stands Out 

Das has been to other gyms before, but he says none were like Mo-Mentum Fitness. I was so honored to hear him say this. 

He kindly said that what makes our Mo-Tribe special is the personalized attention and the community of like-minded members. The trainers understand and regularly encourage him to meet his goals.  

And let’s not forget Koa — Mo-Mentum Fitness’ official doggy door greeter — who adds a special touch to everyone’s post-workout routine! 

Das’s story is a powerful reminder of how making fitness a priority can transform your health, happiness, and overall quality of life. In the next section, we’ll share Das’s advice to anyone hesitant about starting their fitness journey. 


Das’s Advice and Insights: It’s Never Too Late to Start

After experiencing such positive changes, Das has some words of wisdom. Especially for anyone thinking about starting their fitness journey after 50. Das reminds everyone that beginning a fitness journey that includes weightlifting after 50 is like a marathon, not a sprint. Especially as we get older, it’s important to take it one step at a time.  

He admits it was tough at first. He couldn’t even do a squat without support. But now he’s doing exercises he never thought possible, like kettlebell squats and ball slams. His journey proves that with patience and effort, transformation is within reach for anyone. 


The Value of Fitness 

To those hesitant about starting, Das says, think of fitness as an investment in your future, much like saving money. But instead of financial gains, you’re working towards a healthier, more active life. He believes it’s better to spend a bit on fitness now than on doctor bills later. 

Das’s favorite quote has guided him through his fitness journey: “If you don’t make time for your wellness, you will be forced to make time for your illness.” 

At Mo-Mentum Fitness, we’re honored to serve such amazing people as Santanau Das. Thank you, Das for being such an inspiration to us all! 


Mo-Mentum Fitness: A Community That Cares 

Das says a few specific things set Mo-Mentum Fitness apart from other gyms: 

  • the personal connection felt within the Mo-Tribe community 
  • the trainers’ expert advice tailored to his needs 
  • everyone supports each other’s goals — from trainers to fellow gym-goers 

Das journey is truly inspiring. From battling multiple injuries to weightlifting after 50. His story shows that with determination and the right support anyone can transform their life, no matter their age. 

Whether you’re 50, 60, or beyond, it’s never too late to make a change for the better. If Das’s story has inspired you, consider taking that first step towards a healthier, happier future today.  

At Mo-Mentum Fitness in Huntington Beach, our focus is on you and your specific goals. If you’re ready to start living your best life, call us at (714) 756-1501 or click here to schedule your free strategy session today. Who knows? Maybe a year from now, you’ll have your own transformation story to share! 


Das’s ANSWERS:  


1. Describe what your life (and your health) was like before fitness.  

I have always played competitive sports my entire life. During high school, it was mostly football and tennis and as I got older of course, I dropped the football but to make up for the loss of contact, I added snowboarding!

After a series of dislocated shoulders, torn meniscuses and broken toes, my mobility began to seriously suffer. I changed the way I played tennis to adapt to the limits of my body putting undue pressure on some joints to compensate for others. I NEVER did weights before. I told my high school coach that if he wanted me to play on the team, then I wasn’t going to do the weight training. Big mistake! 


2. Was there ever a low point or an experience that made your priorities change?  

As I was about to turn 50, I noticed several of my fellow athletes on the tennis court who played in the professional ranks or were All-Americans in college walking around hobbled by years of pounding on the courts. The magic elixir was three Advil and an Icy Hot patch!

I was pretty close to their physical state and realized I wouldn’t be able to continue to play at this level with medication and massages as my crutches. The low point came when I recognized I couldn’t do a single squat without enduring pain. You need to be in this position to effectively return serve or poach at the net.  


3. How did fitness come into your life (or back into your life)?  

My wife Kelly, who is also a member of the Mo-Tribe, suffered from extreme back pain and couldn’t unload the dishwasher. She is also an active skier and tore her ACL a few years back. We knew if we wanted to travel, ski, snowboard, dive, hike, play tennis, paddleboard and do whatever new activity we pursue in the future, we had to get our bodies prepared for the next 40 years. We had to commit to the time and change some of our habits.  But we knew we weren’t going to do this on our own.  


4. What kind of results have you seen since starting a regular fitness program?  

It’s been transformational. And I have only been doing this for one year. My arms are bigger, my glutes are so much stronger, my mobility has increased exponentially (I can touch my toes for the first time in my life!) and I can almost hang for 2 minutes!

I read some articles (confirmed in a book Amanda gave me called “Outlive: The Science & Art of Longevity” by Dr. Peter Attia”) that grip strength is one of the top 5 things associated with dementia and mental cognition. I no longer compensate in my tennis game. Now, if working out would only change my temper on the court! 

5. Please talk more about the actual changes in your life.  (weight loss, confidence, more endurance, less medications, increased energy, better relationships etc.)  

The biggest noticeable change was my waist size. My old pants and suits don’t fit me which is a good thing other than what I paid for those suits! My weight didn’t drop that much. I just have more muscle than I ever did (a pound of muscle is the same as a pound of fat) and my metabolism changed after I started eating more proteins. I didn’t realize I had to eat almost 100g of protein a day when I was building muscle.

I have always been doing cardio activities so I didn’t think another workout would do all that much in terms of eating. My friends all comment on my “new arms” which is definitely complimentary but would have been nicer if was in my 20s 😊 


6. Let’s focus in on the blood work.  What kind of changes have you seen there?  What do these changes mean for your lifestyle, longevity, finances, etc?   

I have really bad genes in my family. Lots of cancers, high blood pressure/cholesterol and unfortunately, short lifespans. It’s easy to use this as an excuse and attribute all ailments to my genes. But I learned you can make lemonade out of lemons. My triglycerides are at an all-time low. My LDL is over 60 and total cholesterol is at 148 (another low). I still have to do my A1C check for diabetes but because I consume so much lean proteins and yogurts, I am pretty confident in the outcome. Why do you make fitness a priority in your life?  

7. These days, what makes you truly happy and feel at peace?  

Knowing that I am investing in my future. A lot of people think of investing from a financial point of view which is absolutely fine. However, if you don’t invest in your health in parallel, then IMHO, it’s like you invested your money in gold versus stocks and bonds. You aren’t going to manifest long-term returns. This has allowed me to do all the activities I am passionate about without restrictions and take up new ones like surfing.  


8. How do you feel compared to 1 year ago?  

Night and day. I always had great endurance due to my cardio but grip strength, lifting weights, mobility and basic movements like squats, lunges, pullups, etc. were non-existent.  

9. What is your favorite thing about Mo-Mentum Fitness?  

Definitely the ropes and the sled push – NOT! I have tried a few gyms on and off throughout my life. They never stuck because I didn’t know what I was doing, I got a lot of bad advice and the goals for most of the people were much different than mine. When I met Amanda and the rest of the team, they took the time to understand my issues and my confidence level. It wasn’t about lifting to be Arnold Schwarzenegger or being able to compete at some Cross Fit competition. It’s a small gym with like-minded members who all have similar goals and lifestyles. It’s extremely personal and communal.

For me, private lessons are the way to go. But even when I do my private sessions with Amanda, Steve and James will take the time to help out on certain routines where they have more expertise in. Everyone is there to pitch in which motivates me to work harder knowing they all want to see me succeed. But my favorite thing has to be Koa and our post-workout rope routine!  


10. What would you say to the person who knows they need to start exercising but is afraid to start?    

This is a marathon, not a sprint. It’s a process especially at our age. It can be daunting doing your first exercises. I couldn’t do a squat without holding onto the TRX bands in my first month. I thought this stuff wouldn’t work on me due to how much my body has broken down over the years. However, I am now doing 45lb kettlebell squats, gorilla squats, 80lb ball slams, and whatever masochistic stuff Amanda devises!

No one goes in thinking “yeah, I can’t wait to get drenched in sweat and fatigued for an hour.” But after you are done, you feel tremendous. And now my mind is trained to focus on the positives post-workout versus the pain during the workout. Yes, it takes time and of course, some money. But would you rather spend money on your fitness now or your retirement savings on hospital bills and PT later?  

I still have a lot to do. I want to trim my visceral fat, work on new goals like pistol squats or getting up and down without using my hands, bench pressing over 200lbs (ok, maybe a bit much)! I know I can do this because one year ago, I didn’t think I could do a squat. 

11. Specifics: your age? job title? children?  spouse? 

50 years old, self-employed, 2 kids in high school and one wife 😊  


Quote: Carpe Diem – Seize the day. To me that means, Don’t wait, live your life to the fullest every single day! 

Picture of Amanda Mittleman

Amanda Mittleman

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