As you get older, it becomes harder to sustain a regular exercise routine. As you get older, the body will start slowing down,become less flexible, take longer to recover and the risk of injury increases.
Despite these challenges, maintaining a healthy level of physical exercise as you age is essential for managing weight, maintaining strength and mobility and generally staying healthy.
When it comes to senior fitness, you need to ensure you’re taking on an exercise routine that is suited to your level of fitness, strength and general mobility. Workouts that have worked in the past may no longer be suitable. Or, if you’re recovering from an injury or you haven’t properly exercised in a while, you might need to ease yourself back into the swing of things.
When it comes to senior fitness, you have a wide variety of options including fitness classes, personal training studios, exercising at home with guided workouts and more. The important thing is to find something you enjoy doing that will deliver the right results for you.
So, whether you’re looking to improve your fitness or mobility, lose weight, rehab from an injury or illness or just maintain general health, we have some seriously smart senior fitness tips for you.
- Consult your doctor
Before starting any exercise routine it’s important to consult with your doctor. They will be able to assess your current fitness level and provide advice regarding what kinds of exercise will benefit you most. Your doctor will also provide information about any pre-existing conditions or niggling injuries you might have. The last thing you want to do during your first workout is aggravate an old injury.
- Work out your goals
Before starting on an exercise program, it’s important to understand what you’re trying to achieve. Do you want to lose weight? Improve mobility, balance or flexibility? Increase strength or improve aerobic endurance? Different types of exercise will be better suited to achieving your goals. Selecting the right kind of workout will help you to see results faster.
- Find something you actually want to do
This may sound obvious, but it’s amazing how many people force themselves through exercise they hate just because it’s the first thing their trainer suggested. If your doctor, physio or trainer suggests swimming as a good low-impact workout, but you don’t like swimming, chances are you won’t stick with the workout. Finding a form of exercise you actually want to do will help keep you motivated and make exercise less of a chore.
- Start small
If you haven’t been exercising regularly, don’t jump right into a strenuous or intense workout. Begin by adding small amounts of exercise to your day and building up. Try walking a little further each day, or increase your exercise routine by ten minutes each week.Don’t be afraid to challenge yourself, but let your body get accustomed to any new workout first.
- Listen to your body
This one is important. Regardless of what your doctor says is a safe amount of exercise for you, or how hard your trainer pushes, only you will know what your body is feeling. If you’re feeling dizzy, in pain, chest pains or pressure, short of breath or any other type of discomfort, then stop and tell your doctor or trainer.
- Talk to a personal trainer
Visit a personal training studio and see what they can do for you. Working with a trainer is a great way to exercise in a safe and supervised situation. A good trainer can design a custom workout plan specifically tailored to your goals. They will also help to motivate you, supervise your workouts and can gradually increase the intensity or length of the workouts as you get more comfortable.
Maintaining your health and fitness as you get older is an essential part of enjoying a happy and active retirement. However, it’s important to be smart when it comes to senior fitness. Always consult the experts, don’t push too hard, and remember to have fun!