Senior women have much to gain from getting fit, and engaging in physical activity is one of the easiest ways for them to boost their health. Following are five tips to help you start an exercise regimen and get into better shape.
1. Start Small
It may be tempting to try a vigorous routine to get in shape quicker. In reality, doing more than the body is used to can cause strained muscles, back injuries, and leg pain, which can slow down your loved one’s healthy exercise plan. Start with about 2.5 hours of aerobic exercise per week, spreading out these activities into 10-minute sessions.
2. Don’t Be Afraid To Lift
Women often shy away from strength training in the form of lifting weights because of a fear of “bulking up.” However, women don’t produce enough testosterone to gain as much muscle as men, especially in their senior years. Strength training has a variety of benefits for women over 65, which include:
- Preventing osteoporosis
- Strengthening muscles to avoid injuries
- Increasing basal metabolic rate
You can begin with small weights and gradually increase the weight to prevent strained muscles, and you should never hold your breath while lifting because it can raise blood pressure to dangerous levels.
3. Get Outdoors
A study done by the University Institute of Geriatrics of Sherbrooke found women over age 50 who exercised outside were more likely to exercise for a more extended period and boost their mood. Consider walking at a nearby park, swim at the community pool, or play with your grandchildren outdoors if weather permits.
4. Invest In Appropriate Exercise Clothing
Though exercising doesn’t necessarily cost anything, it’s essential to invest in the proper footwear and clothing to prevent discomfort and even injury. If you plan on walking, jogging, or playing tennis, you should purchase athletic shoes that fit well. A good pair of shoes will support your feet, preventing blisters and injuries. The proper clothing can also help prevent chafing, whether your loved one needs a well-fitting swimsuit for lap swimming or comfortable clothing for walking.
5. Work Out With Friends
Exercising with friends is often more fun than doing it alone, and it also increases the likelihood of sticking to the routine. A 2011 study published in the American Journal of Health Behavior found that people who exercised with friends had increased energy and mood and decreased fatigue feelings.
Exercise can enhance your energy levels, keep you at a healthy weight, and even possibly reduce some of the symptoms associated with aging. Practice can be useful for your brain and emotional state as well as your body. Whether you’re looking to maintain your current weight or to feel more energetic and healthy overall, there are numerous ways to stay active when you are of senior age