Get moving – or have you heard that before? We all know it’s important to exercise and most of us wish we did more of it. There are many reasons to get started, even if it’s just a little.
Numerous lifestyle changes have been shown to make a great difference in our health and aging. As family caregivers we should encourage and motivate our senior loved ones to participate.
A dear friend, a boomer who I consider a healthy individual, is a role model to all of those she meets, whether seniors or adults who are caregivers. She has espoused healthy eating and has made eating nutritious, whole foods part of her existence. As she ages and has struggled with her weight, as do so many of us, she has added movement and exercise into her daily routine.
What is so exciting is her inspiration! She motivates those around her — family, friends and co-workers — to incorporate healthy habits into our own lives. So much so, that I thought I would share her passion with you to help inspire you and your seniors as well!
My health guru’s advice is to get moving and keep moving every day, no matter your age!
Benefits of Exercise as We Age
- Increase energy
- Improve bone density
- Stress relief
- Help to reduce joint pain and increase muscle function
- Improve balance to reduce trips and falls
- Relieve boredom and make new friends
- Lower blood pressure to maintain health number
- Manage blood sugar levels in the normal range
- Improve mood, decrease depression
- Manage weight or lose weight
Exercise You and Your Senior Can Do
- Yoga and Pilates
- Water aerobics or swimming
- Resistance and weight training – try to include twice a week
- Sports like golf, tennis, bowling, or jogging
- Aerobic activities such as Zumba, Zumba Gold, Jazzercise and treadmill or speed walking
- Exergames on the Wii
- Gardening and yard work
There are a variety of ways to keep moving throughout the day, such as: taking the stairs more often; parking further away instead of waiting for the closest space; if you spend time behind the desk or computer stand up more instead of sitting; and, use a balance ball when watching TV to build your balance.
My inspirational friend says “exercise helps not only improves your health, but it will make you feel younger too! I am healthier and happier than ever before!”
As we age, we all lose muscle strength. In addition to increased muscle weakness, many of us have three or more chronic diseases to manage and are likely overweight. The key to longevity, but a life worth living, is staying physically active.
Let’s all get moving today!