Did you know that about 85% of older adults in the U.S. are dealing with (at least one) chronic disease?
Needless to say, if you want to stay healthy in retirement, you’ll want to become one of many healthy seniors.
Healthy aging is influenced by several things. Some of these factors are things we can’t control, including our DNA. Others, such as regular physical activity, a nutritious diet, and frequent medical visits. And, don’t forget mental health care as well, all are within our grasp.
According to NIA-funded and other researchers’ findings, there are things seniors may do to stay healthy. They can preserve their independence, and keep their quality of life high. Keep on reading for our full breakdown of senior activities and how to stay healthy regardless of your age.
Healthy Seniors and the Importance of Physical Activity
Exercise is essential at any age, but it becomes much more critical as you get older. Regular physical activity helps counteract some of the adverse health effects of aging. Some of these effects include muscle wasting and thinning bones.
Weight-bearing exercise may help prevent muscle loss. It helps prevent discomfort, injury, and a loss of independence as you become older.
The benefits of physical activity in preventing cognitive deterioration cannot be overstated. A person’s chance of acquiring dementia is significantly reduced if they have a healthy lifestyle. This lifestyle includes regular exercise, instead of a less active one.
Besides, we can’t ignore the connection between your physical and sexual health. Cardiovascular disease, diabetes, depression, high blood pressure, stroke, and various cancers of the uterus and breasts decrease via regular physical activity. You’ll want to read this sexual health guide for more information.
Activity Level: Moderate to Vigorous
You may achieve the overall activity by combining moderately intensive and intense physical activities. Combine moderate and strenuous aerobic exercise on different days of the week to keep things interesting. You may also alternate periods of moderate exertion with periods of vigorous activity.
You may choose from various sports and activities that you find pleasurable. It’s also good to spice things up with a range of events spread out throughout the week.
Moderately Strenuous Aerobic Activity
If you want to include moderate exercise into your daily routine, there are several things to consider. Moderate aerobic activity is a great way to keep your heart rate up.
Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderately strenuous aerobic activity five days a week. But, if you can manage 60 minutes, you’ll get even more advantages. We recommend breaking up a long workout into many shorter ones is one option, each lasting no more than ten minutes—a minimum of 150 minutes each week.
At least five times a week, you should engage in some physical activity.
When your breathing and pulse rate have both risen substantially, you’ve reached a level of moderate exertion. On a scale of one to ten, moderate would fall between five and six. However, you will be breathing more heavily and maybe sweating throughout the chat.
Walking is the most convenient form of exercise for older folks. Moderate-intensity aerobic exercises include brisk walking, easy jogging, running on the treadmill, using an elliptical trainer, biking, swimming, and dancing. Aquatic exercise or stationary cycling may be preferable if you have any orthopedic issues, such as arthritis in your knees and hips.
A stroll does not put you in the moderate-intensity zone, where you may gain steps on your pedometer but is not exerting yourself more physically. Walking faster, uphill, or taking the stairs will get your heart rate up into the moderate range.
Full-Throttle Aerobic Workouts
It is a bit more vigorous than moderate aerobic activity. Here are some strategies to ensure you’re receiving a good amount of aerobic exercise.
A 20-minute workout is all you need if you work out at a high level of intensity. We recommend you to work out at least 75 minutes a week at this level of intensity, but 150 is much better.
At this level, three days a week is the minimum need to satisfy the standards. You can expect your breathing to become quick, and you can no longer speak for lengthy periods, only in short bursts. Your heart rate rises, and you’re likely to start sweating.
Vigorous exercise is a 7 or 8 on a scale of 1 to 10.
Walking quickly may provide a challenging workout for some individuals, but this depends on their current fitness level. Some people need to jog or cycle to get their exertion levels up.
Exercising Your Flexibility
Stretch your primary muscles and tendons for 10 minutes at least twice a week. Every stretch should last 10 to 30 seconds. Professionals recommend that you do this three or four times. Maintaining correct ranges of motion around your joints is critical to your everyday activities because of the benefits of flexibility.
Increasing your range of motion can also reduce your chance of injury and alleviate pain and stiffness around a joint, so it’s worth the effort. Improve your exercises and activities by guaranteeing perfect form and greater activation of the muscles with an adequate range of motion.
Exercises Targeting Balance and Safety
Strengthening your muscles and improving your balance are two benefits of exercising that might help you avoid falling. However, doing balancing exercises three times each week may help reduce the chance of tripping and falling.
Backward, sideways, heel, toe, and standing from a sitting posture are among the exercises recommended by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Try including these balancing routines in your everyday stroll to get the most out of both hobbies. Standing on one foot, tai chi, and yoga all have the potential to improve one’s sense of balance.
Healthy Hobbies for Seniors: The Perks of Exercise
Hopefully, our guide has helped you explore your options and ease your way into becoming one of many healthy seniors. It would help if you began slowly, but after establishing a routine, you may progressively increase the amount of time you spend exercising. Workouts that are more frequent and last longer may minimize health risks and keep weight off.
And, if you’re hungry for more tips and tricks, you should head straight for our fitness and health sections for all the other explainers and guides you could need on your journey into becoming healthier.