The Importance of Staying Active and How To Start an Exercise Routine

While many people love to say that age is just a number, aging does involve muscular decline, especially when seniors ignore the many benefits of routine exercise. A sedentary life is not beneficial to an aging body; muscle deteriorates, bones and joints lose flexibility and mobility, and balance is nearly nonexistent. To prevent the dangers and postpone the natural decline of aging, people must stay active.

Now, an active lifestyle does not mean that you need to go out and join a track team or play sports unless that is something that interests you. Staying active is about using the muscles and body you have to ensure continued mobility and strength. Despite the initial exhaustion, routine exercise can lead to increased energy, but there are a few things to keep in mind before you start.

Always Talk With Your Doctor

There is an eagerness that often accompanies life changes and choices. While you might be excited to begin an exercise routine, you mustn't challenge yourself too much initially. Depending on your current lifestyle and activity level, an exercise routine could lead to complications.

Before you begin a new exercise regimen, contact your primary care physician. Let them know what you want to do, and ask them if they think it is a good idea. Most likely, any doctor will encourage you to adopt healthier habits, but they might be cautious of a full-on exercise routine for sedentary and overweight people.

Instead of encouraging you to ramp up your exercise, a doctor might encourage you to start slow, introducing one new activity at a time until your body gets used to it.

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2 Hours and 30 Minutes Is an Excellent Goal

A healthy and aging adult should aim for two hours and thirty minutes of exercise per week, which averages out to about 20 to 30 minutes of activity per day. The goal is to complete that time using moderate-intensity-aerobic-activity. For instance, a brisk walk, dancing, raking leaves, or swimming are excellent examples of this activity.

Again, you want to focus on your existing ability. While you might want to do thirty consecutive minutes of moderate-activity, you might need to break that into three 10 minute sessions. Also, moderate exercise is not the same for everyone. Some people might be able to walk for a mile briskly, but others can only handle a few blocks. Knowing your limitations is crucial to ensuring you exercise without injury or burnout.

Exercise Schedule

An aging person has different obligations than a youngster. While someone young might only focus on strength training, an older person might need to focus more heavily on balance, coordination, and flexibility. There is no right or wrong way to create an exercise routine, as long as it focuses on health and safety. However, the typical suggestion for older people is two days of muscle strengthening and three days of balance and coordination.

Strength training does not have to be free weights, which could be dangerous for older people; instead, some experts suggest tension bands, dumbells, or machines. The other days of balance and coordination can utilize practices like yoga.

While age is technically only a number if you want to stay active and independent as you get older, consider a stable and habitual exercise routine. What do you do to stay healthy? Leave a comment below.