Normally we think of exercise addicts as young, active, and lets be real ripped individuals. We don’t normally think of individuals like my 75 year old grandmother. My grandmother makes sure to exercise five times in a week! Yeah go Grandma! Ok, but she wasn’t one of those people who always was super into working out. In fact, if it wasn’t for her doctor threatening her, she definitely wouldn’t have pursued this rigorous of an exercise regime. The truth is that perhaps even more than the rest of us, seniors need to keep up their fitness. Here’s a list of 5 reasons why seniors need to make fitness a priority.
Osteoporosis is a disease in which your bones loses density. The bones become fragile and are prone to fracturing. Scary! Even scarier when you realize that the disease affects 200 million women worldwide. But one of the major ways people can prevent and combat osteoporosis is through weight bearing exercise. That’s right participating in weight bearing exercises can help strengthen your bones and prevent fractures!
While more research needs to be done to clarify the relationship between exercise and Alzheimer’s disease, the Alzheimer’s association claims that exercise does seem to combat the disease. “Aerobic exercise improves oxygen consumption, which benefits brain function and has been found to reduce brain cell loss in elderly subjects” (Alzheimer’s Association). Bonus if seniors choose exercise that include mental activity, such as street bike riding or working out with a companion, they get even more brain exercise!
3) Keeps Ya Limber
Even me, an active 20 year old, can feel the difference in flexibility from my younger self. The truth is as we get old we lose our flexibility. Staying limber is super important though because it can help prevent a lot of injuries. So especially as we get older its important to exercise to well.. stay loose :)
4) Helps Keep the Metabolism Running
As we get older our metabolisms slow down. Gone go the days where we can down a shake, burger, and fries without gaining an ounce (wait I never had those days, NO FAIR). Anyways, working out not only burns calories but gaining more muscle will help increase the metabolism. Staying lean and keeping your metabolism up are great ways to boost and lengthen your quality of life.
5) Reduces your Risks for Falls and Accidents
Ok as a self described clutz, this a decent reason for all people. However, seniors especially need to worry about falls and accidents. “Falls are the leading cause of death due to injury among the elderly 87% of all fractures in the elderly are due to falls” according to Learn Not to Fall. By exercising, seniors are building strength, balance, and coordination. All three can help prevent seniors from falling and injuring themselves.