It’s true that as we age we slow down and don’t get as much exercise as we did when we were younger. Unless a medical professional advises against certain exercise, there is no reason we can’t still remain active, In fact, medical professionals advise that staying fit not only helps us as we age by keeping us more limber and our bones stronger, but staying physically fit may also keep our brains more active and engaged and less prone to Alzheimer’s.
Here are some tips for staying fit and healthy:
- Don’t let “feeling tired” keep you from exercise. Even a slow-paced walk will invigorate you and create more energy. Moving on a daily basis helps keep our body operating at its peak and can help ward off obesity, diabetes and other ailments that impact us as we age.
- Consistency counts. Exercising doesn’t have to consume your entire day, but you do need to commit to exercising on a daily basis in order for it to have a positive impact on your health. If you’re not in the habit of exercising regularly, start out slow and plan a short jaunt, but make certain you move quickly enough to get your heart pumping. Plan to walk for at least 30 minutes a day. It’s a low impact, heart healthy exercise that individuals of almost any fitness level can do. Walking lowers blood sugar and cholesterol, can help you lose weight and improve your overall strength. It’s always wise to talk to your doctor before you begin any exercise routine.
- Fill up on water. Water is great for your skin and helps energize your muscles. You will also want to drink water before, during and after your exercise.
- Wear the proper gear. You don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars on fitness wear, but you do want to wear sturdy, comfortable shoes when you’re walking. Wear non-constricting clothing and wear a hat if you’re going to be outside walking in the sunshine. Don’t forget your sunscreen!
- Pay attention to the surfaces on which you’re walking and take note of your balance. As we age, we more easily lose our balance and that can lead to a trip and fall accident. Simply by exercising though we strengthen our core muscles and improve our balance, so make certain when you’re starting a walking routine that you stick to level surfaces.
- On the days when the weather doesn’t cooperate, spend some time in gentle stretching motions in your home. Stretching gets blood flowing to areas where it may have been restricted and also helps prevent muscle imbalance. Toe touches, stretches above your head and even deep knee bends or leg lifts using a chair for balance are great ways to get your stretching in.
Once you’ve committed to a fitness routine, make certain you also commit to a healthy diet. Eat lean proteins, fresh fruits and vegetables and consume at least eight glasses of water a day. Steps you take now to live a healthier lifestyle will go a long way in making your Golden Years more enjoyable!