Think you're too old to exercise? Think it's too late to start trying? We know a 78-year-old record-setting weightlifter who might tell you otherwise.
Staying fit at any age is important. But as you get older, physical fitness tends to decline, as well as the level of daily activities, making exercise an even more important part of maintaining and improving your overall health and quality of life.
Let's Get Physical... and Mental Benefits
As you might expect, regular physical activity has many physical benefits, including enhanced flexibility, greater mobility, and better balance. In addition, when you move on a regular basis, you have a better chance of increasing and maintaining your energy levels (a body in motion tends to stay in motion), boosting your immune system, improving digestive functions, and improving your blood pressure and blood sugar levels.
Additionally, seniors who maintain good physical fitness often report experiencing good emotional wellness, saying they find themselves to be in a good mood or better mood than before. Add to that the fact that good physical and mental well-being can help you lower your risk for chronic diseases or common illnesses, require fewer medical tests and treatments, and maintain your independence, and you can clearly see the value of getting and staying fit at any age.
What Can You Do?
Whether exercise is already part of your routine or something you want to add, talk to your doctor. Ask for recommendations on the best options for your health and age, and discuss any activities you would like to try. You may have to start out slowly, based on your current physical condition, and under your doctor's supervision, but whatever progress you make is a step in the right direction. Having a personal trainer might prove to be beneficial as well, so you have someone who can guide you in working out safely.
And if you still think age is a roadblock when it comes to starting new physical activities, we invite you to be inspired by a story Sally Phillips flagged us to on SeniorAdvisor.com. It's about a grandma who lifts an amount of weight that might make even the youngest of our readers cringe.