There are a lot of misconceptions about the amount of physical activity that seniors should be doing. It is in fact recommended by the World Health Organization that people aged 65 and over, manage 75 minutes of intense, or 150 minutes of moderate physical activity every week. They say this is to improve the health of the heart, and increase muscular fitness. So, what can you do to stay fit when you’re a senior?
Understand the Process
There is no point rushing into anything, as you’ll most likely injure yourself in the process. It is better to look for professional help from a personal trainer at a gym. You’ll want to find a trainer who is able to take their time with you, and can patiently explain how you should be doing different exercises. This is exactly what 78-year old Shirley Webb did.
Shirley wasn’t able to get up from the floor without help before she began her training in the gym. Along with her trainer, John Wright, Shirley began to lift weights. Through gradually increasing the weight she would lift, Shirley can now deadlift a 225-pound barbell, all through hard work and persistence. However, Shirley credits her trainer’s patience with the turnaround in her fitness.
You can make going to the gym a more enjoyable process by attending with a friend or family member, and you can even turn it into an opportunity to socialize. With a gym buddy to accompany you, it can also feel like a less intimidating environment. Your friend will be able to spur you on and give you confidence in your new training regime, helping you to see the results when you perhaps struggle to.
Setting realistic goals will help you in the long run. There’s no use deciding that you’ll lift a 300-pound weight in your second session at the gym. Instead, you should make sure you have a goal for each session, deciding to lift only 10 pounds more than before would be a better idea.
Understand the Benefits
Now you know how you should be going about getting fitter, you should know how it will benefit you. The Mayo Clinic says the main benefits of increasing your physical activity will help improve chronic diseases and conditions. For problems like heart disease and diabetes, regular exercise can help you lose weight, improve your endurance, and the general health of your heart.
As you improve your fitness, your muscles will grow stronger, which also helps lower the risk of fracturing a hip. Flexibility exercises can also assist in keeping your joints healthy and functioning as best as they can do, too.
Authored by: Jess Walter, Health and Wellness Writer