Fitness and health are significant issues for many seniors, actually because they’ve spent many years overlooking those topics. If that includes YOU, when did you decide your fitness level wasn’t a high priority? Fortunately in most cases it’s not too late – you can start taking back your health and fitness at any age!
From treadmills to exercise machines to free weight areas, increasing numbers of people over 60 are showing up frequently at gyms and working out on a regular basis. Most marathons nowadays have athletes 60 and older joining them, and the half-marathons see a lot more retirees participating. And golf courses, tennis courts and squash courts are often filled with seniors, both for their entertainment and to help them get and stay fit.
But if your physical condition isn’t up to extreme senior sports, the good thing is you could start a lot more simply. Health and fitness require appropriate physical exercise, nutrition and sufficient rest to recover fully. But seniors won’t need to jump into major variations to improve their lives – even small changes accumulate as time passes.
What’s your present activity level? If the bulk of your exercise is walking from your couch to the bathroom, taking a walk around the block each day would be a nice beginning. If mobility isn’t an issue for you, how long has it been since you rode a bike regularly? If mobility is an issue, instead think about modest exercise – there are lots of bodyweight work outs and stretches you can do at home without lifting weights.
Or maybe simple, no-impact routines, might fit with you better. Each can be executed at a very basic level by just about any senior, and you may enhance your level as your body adapts. You won’t even need to join a class for either – there are many online videos or DVDs available that you can follow along with at home. Once again, no equipment is necessary to get started…
Does your area have recreation centers? If they have a pool there it is simple to have fun while dealing with your fitness level, and many have in-pool exercise classes for seniors too. Any nervousness you feel about beginning to exercise in front of others will most likely fade rapidly as you experience the social advantages of working out with other seniors from your local community. Interacting with a group of like-minded peers your own age may also help you keep it going and heighten your sense of achievement as you progress.
And remember, when you’re physically ready, the gym is always likely to be there to greet you! If you want to start weight lifting in your house, it’s as easy as starting off with a pair of dumbbells purchased at your local sports store or department store. If you’re feeling more adventurous, talk to the manager at any local gyms – more and more personal trainers are taking special training in working with seniors (thanks to the large baby-boomer demographics), and it will certainly help you get started on the right path if you hire one for at least your first few gym sessions. When lifting weights it’s best to start with shorter, lighter workouts and progress from there – you’re going to be asking your body to move and stretch in unfamiliar ways, so don’t overdo it in the early stages.
As you can see, fitness for seniors may take many paths, and all of them can be started quickly and build from just a small initial effort. Get back your wellbeing starting right now for a longer, happier life – the benefits to YOU are myriad!