Move It on May 25: It’s Senior Health & Fitness Day
How much exercise do you get?
Chances are pretty good it’s not enough. Only 23 percent of adults get the minimum amount of exercise, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
But that’s even lower for older adults. You don’t need to run a marathon or climb a mountain, but it is important to be active.
How much exercise do you need?
Here’s what the CDC recommends for older adults:
- Aerobic exercise. Aim for at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic exercise. Go for a walk. Ride a bike. Walk on a treadmill. Take a fitness class for seniors. Pick a workout video and follow along at home. Just 20 to 30 minutes of exercise per day can a positive effect on your health.
- Strength training. Perform weight-bearing activities at least two days a week to strengthen your muscles. Try push-ups, crunches, squats, and lunges. Take a yoga or pilates class. Or use the weight machines at the gym. Strength training builds muscles and strengthens your bones.
- Balance exercises. At least 3 days a week, spend 5 to 10 minutes performing balance exercises. Here’s an easy one. Stand on one foot for one minute. Use a wall to stabilize yourself if you need to. Now balance on the other foot for one minute. Want to make it more challenging? Now try it with your eyes closed.
If physical activity is already part of your daily schedule, keep up the good work. If it’s not, now is always a great time to get started: May 25 is National Senior Health & Fitness Day.
Research published in the British Medical Journal shows exercise at any age, even if you’ve been inactive for years, can help lower the risk for heart disease, cancer, and early death.
If you really want to improve your health, feel better and live longer, combining regular exercise with a healthy diet can make a big difference.
Hungry for better health? Check out the complete list of Senior-Friendly meals made from fresh ingredients and ready to eat in minutes.