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Senior Health: Pump it up in retirement! If you don’t use it, you lose it!

By , 8:00 am on

About 32 percent of Americans 65 years and older maintain an exercise routine. And it is 30 percent for those 45-65 years old. It is quite possible that you have heard, “You’re approaching retirement or are in retirement—take it easy.” Yes, find time for rest. No, do not excuse yourself from exercise.

Since when did your doctor tell you to quit exercising? For the majority of you, probably never. For those of you with limitations, focus on what your doctor says you can do rather what you cannot do. This is very important; staying active is healthy and possible for you in so many ways.

Why it is healthy?

Prevents early decline. Our body is much better at maintaining and repairing itself when we stay active. We all know that aging is not just from numbers of years. Certainly staying active or not active will affect the progression of decline in your body. What is your purpose in life? Do you have people to serve and grandkids to be with? Keep going or at least try!

Brain power. Exercise fuels the brain. It keeps parts of the brain strong that are often compromised in a person who has dementia. By exercising, you could be helping your everyday function by maintaining your brain function. Good job!

How is it possible?

  • Start where you are at. Whether you have been exercising for years or have taken a lengthy sabbatical from exercise do what your body can handle. No need to train for the marathon or keep up with the 20 year olds (though with time it can be possible). Do ask your physician if there is anything you should avoid. Then start off with realistic goals. After all, the goal is to be able to still walk tomorrow not debilitate yourself to complete soreness.
  • Recreation centers have classes and sessions that are purposed for retired folk. They are during the day because you can do that. This also allows you to workout with people that look like you; this reduces your self-conscientiousness. (I have to say, from a younger person’s perspective, it inspires me and makes me smile when I see older generations working out at the gym when I’m there. I love it! Go you!)
  • Rewards. Studies show that if someone gives themselves a tangible reward after working out they are more likely to keep doing so. Give yourself a smoothie or other delicious treat, or permission to do something else fun that day. When you have a tangible reward, your brain can better link itself to a more immediate benefit, and it works!

New habits can be difficult, but I know you can do it! Happy living well!

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Home Care Assistanceis North America’s premier provider of in-home care for seniors.  Our mission is to change the way the world ages. We provide older adults with quality care that enables them to live happier, healthier lives at home. Our services are distinguished by the caliber of our caregivers, the responsiveness of our staff and our expertise in Live-In care. We embrace a positive, balanced approach to aging centered on the evolving needs of older adults. For more information visit our website at this link:Hourly Home Care Explained.  Or, if you’d like to speak with someone right away, call us at 402-261-5158.


Photo credit: 10# weight by Diamond Rubber