September 8, 2021
As we age, it is more vital to maintain and improve health so that we don’t have a greater risk of wellness concerns later on. One of the best ways to do that is to get at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercises, such as walking, and completing exercises to strengthen cardiovascular health, muscles, balance, cognitive function, and more.
If walking for 30 minutes is too much of a challenge, try starting with just 10 minutes each day. Building up your endurance might take some time, but it is worth it for all of the benefits you reap. Walking with a partner or friends can make it a fun and motivating experience if you like to exercise with others. If not, an active pet would probably love to join you on your fitness journey.
Consider the following goals for jump-starting your commitment to walking more. If you get:
- Fewer than 5,000 steps a day – gradually add activity to your daily routine to increase your daily average steps. Try to reach around 8,000 steps per day.
- 10,000 or more steps a day – you can be confident that you’re getting an adequate amount of endurance activity.
- 10,000 steps a day comfortably – try for 15,000 steps a day, which would put you in the high activity group.
If you like games, think about incorporating a step counter or pedometer into your daily routine to keep up with your steps and challenge yourself to beat your record each day. Mixing things up with hiking, hill climbing, a new park trail, and new fitness goals will keep you feeling motivated.
You can also continue to build strength, flexibility, and endurance with other types of exercise such as weightlifting, yoga, low-intensity stretching, conditioning, and even dancing. Exercise can increase your longevity, alertness, mood, and energy so that you can continue doing the things you love for much longer!
Tips and Tricks
- Remember to stay hydrated by drinking water during your workouts and throughout the day and eat balanced meals and snacks that increase your healing and recovery.
- Your workout attire matters! Make sure you are wearing the right footwear to prevent injury or pain when exercising. Your workout clothes should be comfortable, breathable, and loose enough to move in. Remember to change out of sweaty clothes after a workout to prevent skin infections, rashes, and acne.
- Understanding the importance of preventive foot health is also important. Identifying reputable specialists (podiatrists or orthopedic doctors) in your community for an initial foot assessment will help ensure you and your loved ones are wearing proper fitting shoes. A good source for more in-depth information is the Institute for Preventive Foot Health.