Yikes! I just read a statistic that 28% of adults age 50 and older are ‘physically inactive.’ Hmmm… let’s just call that ‘do not exercise.’
One of the most important ‘musts’ for people–retired or not–is exercise. That is, of course, assuming you want better heart health, mental sharpness and reduced risk for chronic diseases.
If you think you should get a pass because of various excuses, forget it. I know them all, including:
"I'm too busy/tired." We all know you can find time if something is a priority. So think of it this way - call it 'doing something for my heart' or 'for my mental sharpness'. I assume those are priorities. And by the way, remember that exercise gives you more energy and gets you ready to meet busy schedules.
"I hate to exercise." There are lots of things that come under the heading of exercise. Dancing?Gardening? Hide and go seek with your grandkids? Believe it or not, even walking with purpose around the park or the mall will give you credit-if done on a regular basis. Convinced yet?
"I'm too old." My aerobics instructor just told the class that one of her students in another class will be 90 next week! There is not an age restriction on exercising. Obviously, you can choose what kind of exercise works for you. Just choose one. But forget the 'too old' whine. The only person you are fooling is yourself.
For those who have never really had an exercise routine – other than saying, “I’m going to start exercising, next week”-here are 3 simple hints to move you forward:
1–Ask yourself WHY you never seem to get to ‘next week.’ Try to be honest about what is stopping you from starting. Write it down.
2–Make an exercise plan keeping in mind your answers from #1.
Include your WHERE:
3–On your Mark...,Get Set...,GO! Buy some shoes (not like Barbie's!) and a comfortable outfit. Don't talk about your size, shape or weight. Those things don't matter. Repeat after me: “Heart health, mental sharpness, reduced risk for chronic diseases.
Loretta Saff, M.A., CPC, CPRC