Some people are just plain lucky: even when they haven’t gone out of their way to exercise regularly or count their calories, they have stayed in pretty good shape. For others, maintaining a healthy lifestyle has always involved paying close attention to diet and exercise. Regardless of which end of the spectrum you fall on, it is an undeniable fact that as we get older we all need to make an extra effort to stay healthy. After all, you are only as young as you feel and countless studies have proven that the healthier you are, the happier you are, too.
Studies have found that maintaining an active lifestyle carries numerous benefits for retired individuals. Since our metabolisms naturally slow down as we age, exercise can help us counteract the effects and maintain or lose weight. Regular exercise can also lead to improved mobility, and recent research has found that people over the age of 65 who exercise regularly have a significantly lower risk of falling down than those who don’t. Exercise can even reduce the impact of illness and chronic disease by improving immune function, bone density and heart health. People who stay active also have a lower risk of chronic conditions such as Alzheimer’s, diabetes, heart disease, colon cancer, and osteoporosis.
The benefits of staying active aren’t just physical, either. Exercise improves your sleep, boosts your mood, and benefits brain function, which can help prevent memory loss, cognitive decline, and dementia.
Many people think that as they get older they won’t be able to exercise, or that there’s no point in staying active, but the opposite is true. An active lifestyle in retirement can improve your health, your quality of life, and help you stay independent as long as possible. And it’s never too late to start an exercise program!
Tips for starting a fitness program:
- Check with your doctor first. While exercise is rarely harmful, there may be some exercises that are better for you than others, especially if you have a chronic condition such as back problems or arthritis.
- Start slow. It’s good advice anytime you’re starting a new exercise program. If you’re doing something new, you can hurt yourself if you go “all out” right away, so start exercising a bit at a time and work up to it.
- Find an activity that you like. There are a lot of good activities that can help work exercise into your daily life. Taking walks is a great place to start, as it doesn’t take any special equipment and you can do it just about anywhere. Plus, taking walks with friends and loved ones can give you time to catch up. Water aerobics and water sports are another good option, because exercising in water reduces the strain that you place on your body’s joints. Whatever kind of activity you do, make sure that it’s something you enjoy, and that you’ll be motivated to do regularly.
Staying healthy into your golden years is not as hard as you might think, provided you live in the right sort of environment. If your friends and neighbors are active, odds are that you will be, too, and maintaining your wellness will be less of a chore and more of a simple part of your daily life. And when it comes to senior living in Reading, Pennsylvania, there is no healthier community than The Heritage of Green Hills.
This article was brought to you by The Heritage of Green Hills in Shillington, Pennsylvania, a vibrant independent living retirement community driven by an innovative wellness program. Phone 484-577-8673 to learn how easy it is to move to The Heritage of Green Hills or click here to visit our Contact Us page.