As you age, your body starts to change. It is important to take the proper steps necessary to stay as fit as possible. Here are 10 tips to help you stay on track for a healthier future:
Maintain a Positive Outlook
Being fit and healthy does not only apply to your physical wellness but also your mental wellness. In other words, if you think you are old, you will act and feel old. However, if you see yourself as young and vibrant you will act and feel young and vibrant. Adopting a positive outlook on life not only reduces stress but provides for overall better health.
Find Your Passion
Figure out what it is that you love and are passionate about and find a way to do it. Even if you are unable to do what you love now, at least make it part of your life so that when you retire you have something to look forward to and occupy your time with. Maybe it is golfing, traveling, photography, or maybe you always wanted to write and publish a book. Maybe it is spending more time with your family and grandchildren. Whatever it is, find it.
Volunteering is a great way to make new friends and remain thankful for all that you have and it is a great way to help others become thankful as well. Love animals? Volunteer at your local animal shelter. Being involved within your community creates a sense of purpose and a reason to get out of bed in the morning. You have less time to think about the fact that you are aging or that your bones are feeling achy. Instead your focus is on trying to improve yourself and improve the lives of those around you. This also provides you with an activity that does not feel like a workout but gets you in motion and burning calories.
Stimulate Your Mind
Visit museums, read books, play chess, complete crossword puzzles, play cards– anything to engage your mind and keep your senses sharp. Keeping a journal is a great way to exercise your brain and help record memories and events that have taken place.
Maintain Smart Nutrition
Choose a clean eating lifestyle with fresh whole foods, low-fat protein sources, such as fish, lean meat and skinless poultry. Cut out processed foods, drink lots of water, vegetables, high fiber foods, take more vitamins and supplements, and minimize your salt intake. The risk of high blood pressure increases with age. Today we have the benefit of many name brands offering low sodium products. Best practice is to eat a decent sized breakfast, medium lunch, and light dinner with lots of veggies –the more colorful, the better.
Use lower weights in order to be gentle on bones and joints but use increased repetitions. Studies show that lifting weights can help protect your bones and prevent osteoporosis related fractures. Weight training can help to increase bone density and muscle strength in people of any age, but in over-50s it is particularly important, as it can help to reduce the effects of aging.
Cardio is even more important as you age. Walking for at least fifteen minutes at a time, at least three times a week, is a great way to keep moving. Cardio improves your immune system, cardiovascular health (heart and lungs), increases your stamina (over time), will make you sleep better and help to clear your mind.
Get Enough Sleep
Sleep becomes increasingly important as we get older and seems to be harder to come by as well. If you have trouble falling asleep, try to go to bed earlier. Record your shows and watch them the following day instead of staying up for your favorite late night talk show.
Regular Check-Ups at the Doctor
Studies have shown that the key to early detection is routine yearly check-ups with your doctor. The earlier a problem is noticed, the better chances you have of recovery.
Regardless of what age you are it is never too late to get fit. Even if you have never exercised a day in your life, you are never too old to start reaping the benefits of exercising. The time to start is now.