Despite the fact that the Department of Health and Human Services recommends all adults get at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise per week, more than one in four U.S adults over the age of 50 are physically inactive. Any amount of exercise is beneficial and it is never too late to start. Countless studies show that even light exercise can improve heart health and even prevent chronic diseases like diabetes.
Many older adults want to take control of their health, but have concerns about starting to exercise in the later stages of life. Some are afraid of injuring themselves. Some have no idea what they would do if they were to step into a gym because they’ve never been. Most simply feel that it’s too late.
While some of these concerns are valid, the latter is FALSE. Anyone can start exercising, regardless of age, as long as they take the proper steps to ensure safety. If you’re ready to transition from a sedentary lifestyle to an active lifestyle, try these three steps before you hit the ground running:
1. Consult your primary care physician
Your primary care physician knows everything about your medical history, current conditions, and in general; the human body. They can advise you on exercises that will be safe or unsafe for you to perform. This is especially important if you have a condition like arthritis, osteoporosis, or diabetes. You’ll need to take special precautions, but older adults who live with these conditions can still safely exercise and reap the benefits.
2. Start slow
Oftentimes, the body’s response to a workout is better felt the day after than it is during the exercising. You don’t want to do too much right off the bat because you could potentially risk serious injury. Try a bit of light exercise and see how you feel the next day. Then, work your way up. People of all ages should test their bodies before they put them through intense workouts, especially older adults.
3. Work with an experienced personal trainer
If you have no idea what you’re doing in the gym, you should seriously consider working with a personal trainer. They can assess your current fitness level, your setbacks, and your goals. Then, they will give you a personalized plan to help you reach those goals. Personal trainers also give you specific instructions and feedback to correct your form, which maximizes the benefits of exercising and prevents injury. If you want the best results with the lowest risk, consult with a trainer who is experienced in working with older adults.
Use these three tips to transition into your new active lifestyle! Follow our blog for more tips and guides to help improve your fitness.
If you’re looking for a personal trainer near Dartmouth, MA, Sault Fitness works with clients of all ages and has a proven track record for results. Contact us at (508) 207-6608 or fill out our consultation request form. We’re looking forward to helping you live a healthier life!