Ever since I got serious about race walking, I can’t praise the benefits of an active lifestyle enough. Of course, it’s easy to be active when you live in a Del Webb Community. However, you don’t have to move to an active adult retirement community to adopt a more active lifestyle. Living a more active life doesn’t mean joining a gym. You need to be socially connected, too! Maintaining an active lifestyle contributes to overall well-being and quality of life. Here are the top 10 benefits you can expect to enjoy.
Regular physical activity helps improve cardiovascular health, maintain a healthy weight, and reduce the risk of chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis. You don’t have to do anything crazy. Just thirty minutes of exercise per day can have a positive effect. Even if you don’t want to join a gym, you can still get a great workout walking outside or watching an online exercise class. The key is to start moving and to stay moving!
Engaging in strength training and balance exercises can help seniors maintain muscle mass and coordination. In turn, this reduces the risk of falls and enhances overall mobility. Falls are a serious problem, often resulting in hip fractures and head trauma. Fortunately, strength training can make you stronger, steadier, and less susceptible to injury!
Physical activity is linked to improved mental health. It can reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety, boost cognitive function, and enhance overall mood and well-being. So, if you want to be happier, get moving! A happy body leads to a happy mind.
Participating in group activities or fitness classes provides opportunities for social interaction, reducing feelings of isolation and promoting a sense of community. Of course, you can join a social club or an online group. If you need more ideas on how to socialize more, click HERE to read my article on exactly that.
I don’t know about you, but sometimes my sleep schedule is downright whacky. Fortunately, regular physical activity can contribute to better sleep patterns. This can aid in the prevention of sleep disorders and promote restful sleep. Make sure to avoid stimulants, like caffeine, before bedtime. Also, limit screen time up to thirty minutes before you go to bed!
Exercise helps maintain joint flexibility and reduces the risk of arthritis-related issues. Walking, swimming, and yoga are all low-impact exercises that promote joint health.
Physical activity has been associated with better cognitive function and a reduced risk of cognitive decline in older adults. So, if you feel like your mind has been slipping lately, don’t assume the worst. Start exercising more and see if that helps your brain snap to action.
Regular exercise supports a healthy immune system, reducing the risk of illness and helping the body better respond to infections. While the COVID-19 pandemic may be nearly four years behind us, we never know what disease our bodies may need to fend off! So, always make exercise a priority!
Maintaining an active lifestyle helps seniors retain their independence by promoting mobility, strength, and the ability to perform daily activities without assistance. If aging in place is your goal, then get moving! Make sure you’re working all your muscle groups and staying as active as possible so you can live on your own safely and comfortably.
Overall, an active lifestyle contributes to an improved quality of life. Seniors who stay physically active often experience a greater sense of vitality, fulfillment, and happiness. I’m a living testimony to the fact that active living does, in fact, improve your quality of life. So, if you feel a lack of purpose or depression has been creeping in, don’t sit in your chair and stare at the wall. Get out, get moving, and get happy!
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Originally published January 31, 2024