Daily exercise is essential for everyone, particularly as we age. No matter if your career and family commitments put your fitness regimen on hold for several years, it’s never too late to get serious about fitness. Consider the following tips before starting.
Focus on the “Why”
Exercise may seem like a tough feat to begin if you’ve been sedentary for a while, and age can bring some mobility limitations; however, the benefits outweigh the challenges. Daily exercise can help fight serious problems like heart conditions, high blood pressure, diabetes, and arthritis. As we age, our body naturally loses muscle mass, but fitness training will help to maintain and rebuild it. Exercise will also improve your mood, enrich sleep, and help to reduce stress.
Always speak with your doctor to make sure you’re healthy enough to start exercising. Once you get the “go ahead,” start slow. Your body needs time to adjust, so opt for low-intensity activities such as walking every other day. You can eventually work up to resistance-training that helps strengthen muscles. Try using resistance bands or going for a swim. Low-impact activities are less stressful to the joints and will help ensure a productive workout while reducing the chance of injury.
Work on Your Balance
Improving your balance and posture is more important now than ever. According to the CDC, 2.5 million older adults are treated for injuries related to a fall each year. Try a Tai Chi or Qi Gong class. These are martial arts-inspired programs that focus on movements to increase balance and strength. Tai Chi has been shown to help ease pain and stiffness from arthritis, and it may even help you sleep better. You can search Google or call a local fitness center to find a class in your area.
No matter what stage of life you’re in, fitness is an integral part of a healthy daily lifestyle. To learn more, check out this helpful infographic to see what the US Department of Health and Human Services recommends for Physical Activity.