If you want to improve your fitness level as you age, you will need to commit yourself to a process that takes time, diligence, and energy. This, of course, is true for any age, however, getting older comes with its own set of challenges. That said, staying fit and healthy later in life doesn’t have to be difficult and stressful. I happen to know there are a few simple tips and tricks to help you maintain wellbeing without extreme worry and stress. Here are my top 3 ways to improve fitness as you age.
One of the best things you can do for your whole body and your fitness level is walking. Walking provides the mind and body with benefits like building muscle, liberating stiff joints, and calming your nervous system. Since it isn’t stressful and you can choose your pace and difficulty level, you can simply enjoy the time and know you are doing something good for yourself.
As you progress to walking regularly and longer distances, it’s important to wear the appropriate footwear. I recommend that you invest in a pair of good walking shoes, as well as any custom orthotics to ease any discomfort you might have when walking.
Know that the foods you eat directly affect your state of health. It also can either give you the energy to engage in fitness or it can create a deficit. It’s important to know what your body needs for everyday tasks, as well as for intentional fitness activities. You want to eat enough quality calories to fuel your endeavors. If you aren’t sure what you should be eating, consult your health care provider or nutritionist.
Your dietary needs might also change as you age or if you have particular conditions. These factors may create restrictions, so be clear about what your health and fitness goals are. Eating a balanced diet will help you to perform at your full potential, giving you sustainable energy required to advance your fitness level.
Join a Group or Class
If you struggle with motivation to exercise or simply don’t enjoy most physical activity, finding a new group or class could be the ideal choice for you! Choose something that fits your physical needs, lifestyle, and budget. Additionally, consider your social needs and personality. If you enjoy peaceful, gentle fitness, consider yoga, tai chi, or walking groups. Search online or in local newspapers to find classes around you, as leisure centers, gyms, and fitness studios often have various levels and classes.
Improving your fitness level as you age isn’t rocket science. It’s basically about listening to your body and doing what feels good to you. Remember, always consult your doctor before starting any new fitness activity. Be gentle if you’re just starting out and be mindful of how you feel as you build up to more activity. Believe that doing something is better than doing nothing at all. You are not in competition with anyone to be stronger or more fit. Whatever you do, do it for yourself!