It’s never too old to get fit or start an exercise routine, the benefits of physical fitness are endless regardless of age.
A recent study published in the journal JAMA Network Open found that starting to exert yourself more in later life resulted in the same risk reduction of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and all-cause mortality as being active from a teen.
There was an optimal time to work out to achieve the most reduction in risk found in the study which was exercising for a weekly total of two and half hours – activities could even be gardening or housework to hit your total. Alternatively, just 75 minutes of vigorous activity such as fast-paced walking, running, swimming or aerobics achieved the same.
There are also many other reasons why getting fit later in life can benefit your overall health. Experts have shared that there are lots to gain from an overall sense of well-being and psychologically feeling better, as well as improving depression and having more energy. For those a little older, keeping fit also improves balance and lessen the chances of falling as exercise helps to improve strength and function.
However, before you kick off your new exercise routine there are a few things to consider!
Take it easy
We know that sometimes when individuals decide they want to start something – they might try and go full-pelt straight away but to prevent injury, you need to take it steady.
If you have any health concerns, we would always recommend to go and get these checked by a qualified medical professional before embarking on a new health campaign. If you are generally in good health, just take it slow and steady to ensure you remain that way.
We would always recommend:
- Stretching and warming up before every workout.
- Then follow this with a slow starting routine that includes aerobic exercise, like biking or a treadmill, and sensible weight training that builds up to a 30–40-minute workout.
- Then end your work with a cool down and further stretches to ensure you don’t get stiff or sore.
- This can be done up to five times a week – but you also need to ensure you have some rest days in between too.
What’s best when it comes to getting into shape
The best way to get into shape, quickly yet carefully is led by two things – specific exercise and mindset.
Experts suggest that easing into exercise and mixing things up will reap the best rewards.
Those over 40 should look to do the following regularly:
- Moderate aerobic activity for 30 minutes daily (100 steps per minute)
- Muscle strengthening with all major muscle groups three days a week.
- Balance exercises two days a week at minimum.
Other experts also suggest that using your mindset to drive success can really work. For example, using an up-and-coming life event as motivation, or anchoring your goals on the most valued people in your life such as your partner, spouse, children, grandchildren etc. Many believe that this is developing your get-fit routine to becoming more of a team involvement and/or sport – helping you to remain focused.
Not hit barriers
Age is nothing but a number and that alone should not be a factor against exercise. But there are many other things that could be.
Some will make that all important New Year’s resolution but only keep to it for a month or two, as many keep fit failures are due to not connecting the dots between ideology and real-life ambitions and routines. Making sure the ‘why’ is very much behind your goals will ensure success every time.
So, when it comes to getting fitter in later life it’s all about easing into a tailored routine, understanding your drivers and making sure they remain as your underlying motivation to a healthier and happier you.