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How to Start Exercise After 50

How to Start Exercise After 50

As you get older the importance of a healthy lifestyle grows. Being active and keeping fit actually gets more important with age, not less. Getting regular exercise helps boost your energy levels, fights off serious illness, improves your mood, and helps you keep your independence. If you are not used to exercising, here are some ideas for how to build fitness into your life for optimum health post-50.

Benefits of Exercise After 50

  1. Exercise helps you lose weight as you get older. Putting on weight is not an inevitable part of aging. However, as your metabolism slows it can be harder and harder to maintain a healthy weight. Exercise boosts your metabolism and helps you burn calories.
  2. Exercise helps you avoid chronic illness and disease. When you exercise on a regular basis you improve the function of your heart, your immune system, and your blood pressure. Your digestive system works better and your bone density improves. You have a lower risk of diabetes, heart disease, obesity, Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, and osteoporosis.
  3. Exercise helps keep you flexible as you get older and also helps your balance. This can improve your coordination and prevent falls. When you stay flexible you can avoid chronic conditions such as arthritis.
  4. Exercise improves your sleep – you fall asleep more easily and sleep deeply.
  5. Exercise can help prevent cognitive decline and may slow the progress of dementia.
  6. Exercise is a mood booster and can increase your self-confidence.

How to Start an Exercise Regime

Make sure that it is safe for you to start exercising by getting clearance from a doctor. This is especially important if you have an existing medical condition. Check to see if there are any activities you should avoid.

Plan your exercise around your existing medical conditions. For example, you need to know when you are going to take medication and eat when you have diabetes.

If you haven’t exercised in a while, avoid the urge to do too much, too soon. Build up the time you exercise by 10 minutes a week, or try just one fitness class a week to start. Make sure you always warm up and cool down.

Commit to your exercise routine for at least four weeks so you have more chance that it becomes a habit. Keep going even if you don’t feel like exercising one day. Try to stay motivated by focusing on small, achievable goals and by watching how your mood improves and your stamina rises.

If you encounter a problem don’t struggle through – stop and reassess your exercise activities. If you feel dizzy or short of breath, call your doctor.


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