Nothing is as important as exercise to improve our health and state of mind. As we age it is critical to keep moving.
Exercising can prevent many of the ailments we suffer from as we get older. It helps our muscles get stronger and can increase bone strength. The CDC recommends older adults to move more and sit less. Any movement is better than none at all.
Side Effects of Aging
As we age our muscles shrink, our tendons stiffen and our metabolism decreases. We lose strength and mass in our bones, leading to the possibility of fractures. Arthritis builds and we become less flexible. Joints become stiff and do not move as easily.
Healthy Benefits to Exercise
Besides the physical benefits, exercise improves your mental well-being. Older adults who exercise tend to improve their self-esteem along with their muscle tone. They tend to sleep better and have more energy.
The more you exercise the larger your health benefit. The CDC recommends 150 minutes of exercise every week. Those who can’t do this, perhaps due to chronic conditions, should still be as physically active as possible.
Vary your physical activity with different exercises. There are four types of exercise you can do: cardio, strength, flexibility and balance.
Cardio gets your blood flowing and heart pumping. You break a sweat. This can be achieved with water aerobics or golfing without the cart. Biking is another low-impact exercise you can enjoy. For a more vigorous cardio workout, you can try jogging or playing tennis.
All training needs to begin and end with stretching. Muscles need to be warmed up first and then later cooled down. This helps prevent injury during your workout. It also helps keep you limber in life.
Gentle stretching and no jerking motions are important to remember. Hold stretches for 20 to 30 seconds. It is that simple.
Exercise should help you improve your life, but play it smart. Start out slowly and then gradually increase your activities. Consult with your physician and make sure you are healthy enough to do the activities you have planned. Find out how hard you can push yourself without risking injury.
Getting motivated is often the most difficult part of any new routine. It can be tough to get moving every day, especially if you have been sedentary.
Make the time. Set aside time every day to work out. You can start with as little as a 10-minute goal. This may mean you take the stairs instead of the elevator or just get out and take a walk around the block.
Household chores can count as exercise. Raking leaves, cleaning out a cabinet and scrubbing the floor all involve physical activity.
Making it fun makes it easier. Partner up with a friend for a walk and talk session. Get a group together and go dancing. Listen to music or an audiobook while exercising. You will be surprised at how quickly time flies.
Exercise is the key to aging gracefully. Physical and mental health will get better as you move more. You will be stronger and have more energy. Activity will help you to live longer and be more independent as you age. Keep moving!