Seniors, Exercise, And Wellness

Something you can do to increase your overall wellness and health is exercise, but if you're a senior who hasn't moved much in the past couple of years, you may think exercise isn't for you. Maybe you have no interest in going to a gym to lift weights, so you've never looked at starting an exercise program. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to get exercise, even as a senior who might not have done much for a while. And once you do start, your sense of wellness should improve. 

Modified Workouts

Look for modified workouts that use movements like wall push-ups and other gentle versions of different exercises. Look for things with slower movements, like tai chi, and workouts that focus on practical fitness for everyday life at first. You can always expand and change your workouts later on when you're more in shape and have more of a sense of what you want your goals to be. For now, though, start slow, look for gentle movements, and focus on increasing your general wellness.

Don't Push Yourself (at First)

Always start out slowly and with easy exercises. If you haven't exercised for a long time, you'll be surprised at how even simple exercises can wipe you out after two or three sets. You also don't want to do anything that requires a suddenly intense bout of movement or that relies on having very good balance and stamina, such as running up stadium steps two at a time. It might feel kind of dull and weird, especially if you used to be an athlete, but if it's been a long time, you are not at the same level of fitness as you were back then. But that's why you're doing this now, to regain some of that well-being.

Keep Track of Your Progress

Once you start on a program, keep track of your progress and keep the progress visible. If you exercise at home, for example, use a paper chart that you can hang on your wall, taking it down as needed to log your latest exercise. You can use an app if you prefer, but a chart on good old paper provides a nice, easy-to-see record of how you've been doing. There are many ways to track your progress and you can create your own based on what's important to you.

Why should you have a permanent record of what you've been doing, especially if your current goal is to just "do something"? Because, as you just "do something," what qualifies as "something" is going to get easier over time, and you'll do more. It can be refreshing to realize that your "just get up and move" workouts have gone from, say, 10 bicep curls to 25 bicep curls over the past few months.

You never want to do something that is beyond your current capability, even if you used to do it regularly. Wellness includes exercise, but it also includes avoiding injury during your workouts.

If you're unsure where to start or would like to get a baseline reading for your health, speak with your doctor about senior wellness