It’s no secret that exercise is a key to good health throughout our lives, and this is especially true as we age. According to the CDC, adults over 65 should get at least 150 minutes of moderate activity per week, as well as at least two days of activities that strengthen muscles. So if you thought your daily walk was enough, you could be missing out on some essential health benefits.
Why It’s Vital to Stay Strong
An aging body tends to lose muscle mass and strength over time, which can lead to frailty and falls, impaired mobility and a higher susceptibility to chronic disease. Likewise, after age 40, bone mass declines by 1% each year, increasing the risk of fractures and, for 8 million women and 2 million men, osteoporosis.
According to the NIH, 30% of adults over 70 have mobility issues that make everyday activities like walking, standing and using the stairs difficult. If you have trouble with the basics, you’re more likely to gain weight, which in turn can lead to significant health concerns such as heart disease and Type II diabetes.
This can lead to a vicious cycle of declining quality of life: move less, and you may not be able to move much at all—and when you do, you may fall and break a bone. Fortunately, the reverse is also true. Move more, and you’ll have more energy and strength to keep moving—and enjoy fun, active times with friends and family.
Add Strength Training to Your Routine
Strength training isn’t just for bodybuilders and athletes. While strength training does incorporate weightlifting, it doesn’t have to mean superhuman feats in the gym. The goal is to use resistance to make your muscles work harder as they contract. Your body responds to the extra effort by building up those muscles so they can continue to perform the repeated action. Another benefit? Weight training also boosts bone density.
There are many ways to add resistance training to your daily routine, including:
- Free weights (dumbbells)
- Weight training machines
- Medicine balls
- Resistance bands
- Other exercises using your body weight
You can get creative with strength training, too. For example, try wearing ankle weights or carrying light dumbbells on your daily walks, or load up a backpack with a few books to make it more challenging.
Personalize Your Exercise Routine
The trick to sticking to a strength training routine is to choose activities you enjoy. Meet friends for a weight-augmented walk, or challenge your grandkids to join you for fun resistance exercises at home. You can boost your motivation by working with a personal trainer or coach who can design a regimen that provides just the right amount of challenge.
Fellowship Village makes it easy to start and stick to an effective routine, thanks to state-of-the-art gym facilities that you’ll actually look forward to using. Our personalized wellness program includes a comprehensive assessment to develop a plan that can add more years in your life and more life in your years.
To find out more about how you can enjoy strength training, wellness and an inspired life at Fellowship Village, book your personalized tour today!