The body, at any age, will benefit from exercise and healthy eating habits. The benefits include; renewed energy, clearer thinking, improved sleep, stronger bones, greater flexibility, enhanced muscle strength, greater endurance, improved organ functions (i.e. heart and lung), improved immune functions and reduced tension.
Though some challenges may arise with illness, pain or mobility limitations, there are ways to modify exercise practices to allow for health benefits. If older adults can focus on a goal of health and fitness, they can find a way to make it happen.
It is always important to discuss exercise intentions and practices with your health care provider and be sure to know any physical signs that would alert you to take it easy. If you have specific considerations or limitations, consult a physical therapist or health and movement professional to make sure that you make the best choices for your body.
Keys to exercise success include:
- Choosing an activity that is enjoyable
- Beginning slowly and pacing yourself
- Joining a program or class where there is supervision, fun and support from others
- Picking an exercise buddy for company and motivation
- Keeping an exercise journal to record successes
- Celebrating successes in healthy ways