Home > Blog > 5 Things You Should Know About Fitness for Seniors

5 Things You Should Know About Fitness for Seniors

These are supposed to be the best years of your life — the retirement years, the golden years. Your quality of life will likely be a result of two lifestyle factors: diet and exercise. One of the benefits of keeping fit is increased mobility and balance–two factors that are of immense value to seniors. An exercise regimen can help you sleep better, feel more self-confident, lose weight, and alleviate some of the symptoms of arthritis. By following a few tips, you can enjoy the benefits of being a fit perennial.

Preventative Care is the Best Care 

Before deciding on changes to your daily routine, talk to your medical provider. Your doctor will have great advice for you and can help steer you towards eating the right foods, getting enough rest, and participating in the right activities that benefit your fitness. 

Even if your overall health is right, you need regular check-ups. Just because you look and feel great doesn’t always mean you shouldn’t have your regular check-ups. Remember, preventive care is the best care. Stay on top of your fitness and overall well-being by regularly speaking with your medical provider–and be honest with them. Regular screenings should include physical and mental health. Both are important.

A safety assessment of your home would also fall under the subject of preventative care. One of the leading causes of death in people over 65 is injury related to falls. While physical fitness can help avoid injury, certain safety measures are also worth considering.

Eat the Right Foods

Research shows that a proper diet can help prevent and reverse heart disease and other chronic issues. These can include hypertension, obesity, strokes, type 2 diabetes, and autoimmune conditions. One of the foremost cardiologists in the field of plant-based science, Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, writes: “There is broad evidence that plant-based nutrition is the key to abolishing chronic disease. Epidemiological studies of cultures that have traditionally plant-based diets confirm an absence of the common chronic diseases that kill so many Americans.” You can learn more by researching the works of Dr. Esselstyn and his colleagues, such as Dr. Colin T. Cambpell, Dr. Michael Greger, Dr. John McDougall, and Dr. Will Bulsiewicz, to name a few.

Give Love to Your Mental Health 

If you don’t think that mental health impacts your fitness, think again. When your mental health isn’t sharp, you are not fit. No matter how thin you become or how muscular you appear, poor brain health eventually will catch up with you. More serious mental health conditions can develop for you, and your physical well-being also can suffer. 

Don’t ever be embarrassed to seek care for your mental health. Your primary medical provider can be of service here. And if needed, they can refer you to specialists and other resources that could benefit you. 

In the vein of preventative care, it might be beneficial to try meditation or yoga classes. Life can be stressful, and a calm mind is important. It’s also nice to interact with the types of people you generally find in meditation or yoga class.

Try a Gym Membership 

It’s important to exercise, and one of the easiest ways to do that is to join a gym. Light aerobic exercises like cycling, jogging, swimming, and walking can get you in shape and help you remain fit. Many gyms offer classes specifically for seniors. If you’re really feeling gung-ho, you might want to consider hiring a personal trainer. An additional bonus to a gym is that you can exercise come rain or shine. Going to the gym gets you out of the house; it helps you make new friends and socialize with old ones.

In closing, let’s look at one of the most common reasons perennials avoid a fitness routine. Some believe that they’re too old to start exercising. However, it’s important to know that you’re never too old! If it has been countless years since you’ve worked out, talk to your doctor. And find an exercise routine that focuses on gentle activities. You can work your way up to more advanced exercise slowly and gradually.