2023 is winding down and, with the New Year approaching, we’re all another year older. The reality is that life only gets harder as we age. As a former caretaker, I’ve seen first hand how challenging daily activity can be if you haven’t prioritized health and fitness in your youth.
Luckily, there are steps we can all take to both survive and thrive as we age. Here are 10 Tips To Stay Fit As We Age.
For whatever reason, people love to procrastinate when it comes to their health. It often takes a life threatening health scare for people to truly prioritize their health and wellness. Take my word on this: IT WILL NOT BE EASIER TOMORROW. Preparing for the future requires action today, that’s why it is vital to take the first step in improving your health and integrating fitness into your lifestyle today.
CDA - CONSISTENT DAILY ACTIVITY
Once you’ve made the decision to prioritize your health, the first step is consistency. You have to get your body into the habit of doing something EVERY DAY. Whether it’s strength training, cardio, yoga, going for a walk, riding a bike, there needs to be consistent daily activity. Block time in your personal calendar and set reminders to get out of the chair and on your feet every day.
STRENGTH TRAINING - HEAVY
I often see people in the gym on the cardio machines. They put in their 30 minutes to an hour, get a decent sweat, then head out without even a glance at the free weights. I get it. If you’re not used to dumbbells or weight machines, they can be intimidating. But they are often what your body needs. The best way to protect yourself as you age is using free weights, bands, and cables to increase your bone density. Strength training for bone density can improve your posture, mobility, and make daily activities easier. Start small and work your way up. A good rule of thumb is the 15 rep rule. If you can lift a weight 15 times, it’s likely time to increase the weight. Less than that, and you might need to go lighter.
STRENGTH TRAINING - LIGHT
But I just told you to lift heavy! Here’s the thing, one of the main reasons fall out of their fitness routines or give up quickly is INJURY. One of the best ways to injure yourself is lifting inappropriately heavy weights. We’ve all seen the person in the gym grunting and moaning as they throw heavy weights around with terrible form. DON’T BE THAT PERSON. Leave your ego at home and lift appropriate weight with good form. The best way to make sure your form is correct is working with a Personal Trainer, like me!
Remember when you were little and your bones were basically rubber? Remember this morning when it hurt just to get out of bed? Loss of flexibility is a massive detriment to quality of life, especially as we age. Staying flexible makes daily activity easier and allows you to perform exercises with better form, keeping you in the gym consistently and keeping you on the right track! Every night, I stretch my hips, hip flexors, and lumbar spine as I wind down at the end of the day. I’d recommend starting with pigeon for your hips, runner’s stretch for the hip flexors, and cat and camel for your spine.
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