Importance of Exercising As We Age
As we age, our bodies go through a series of changes that can affect our overall health and wellbeing. From decreased mobility to an increased risk of chronic disease, aging can take a toll on the body. However, staying active as we get older can help mitigate some of these negative effects and improve our quality of life. In this blog post, we will explore why people, especially men, should stay active as they get older and some of the ways they can do so!
Maintaining muscle mass and bone density
One of the most significant benefits of staying active as we age is the ability to maintain muscle mass and bone density. As we get older, our bodies naturally lose muscle mass and bone density, which can lead to a variety of health issues, including osteoporosis and sarcopenia.
Regular exercise, particularly weight-bearing exercises like strength training, can help combat this natural decline in muscle and bone density. By engaging in regular strength training exercises, we can maintain and even build muscle mass, which can help support our joints and prevent injuries. Additionally, weight-bearing exercises can help improve bone density, which can reduce the risk of fractures and other bone-related injuries.
If you struggle to enjoy exercising (don’t we all), consider joining an outdoor exercise group, team sport or choose a gym that has small group classes to help keep your motivation high!
Improved cardiovascular health
Staying active can also help improve cardiovascular health, which is particularly important as we age. Regular exercise can help lower blood pressure, reduce the risk of heart disease, and improve circulation throughout the body.
Cardiovascular exercise, such as running, cycling, or swimming, can help improve heart health and increase endurance. Engaging in regular cardiovascular exercise can also help improve lung capacity, which can help reduce the risk of respiratory issues as we age.
Improved mental health
In addition to the physical benefits of staying active as we age, regular exercise can also have a positive impact on our mental health. Exercise has been shown to help reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety, improve cognitive function, and enhance overall mood. Joining a gym, team or exercise group also increases the sense of community, which in turns makes us happier!
Engaging in physical activity can also help reduce stress levels, which is particularly important as we age. Chronic stress can lead to a variety of negative health outcomes, including increased inflammation, decreased immune function, and an increased risk of chronic disease.
Ways to stay active
- There are a variety of ways to stay active as we age, regardless of our fitness level or physical ability. Some examples include:
- Walking: Walking is a low-impact exercise that can be done almost anywhere. Even a 30-minute walk each day can help improve cardiovascular health and increase endurance.
- Strength training: Engaging in regular strength training exercises can help maintain and build muscle mass, which can support our joints and prevent injuries.
- Cardiovascular exercise: Running, cycling, swimming, and other forms of cardiovascular exercise can help improve heart health and increase endurance.
- Yoga or tai chi: These exercises can help improve balance, coordination, and overall flexibility, while also promoting relaxation and stress reduction.
- Group fitness classes: Many gyms and fitness centres offer group fitness classes designed specifically for older adults. These classes can provide a supportive environment and help build community while also promoting physical activity.
Finally, staying active as we age can help increase our overall longevity. Regular exercise has been shown to help reduce the risk of chronic disease, including heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer. Additionally, staying active can help improve overall physical function, which can lead to a better quality of life as we age. If you need a new singlet or t-shirt to help motivate you to go for that walk, you can find some great ones on our website!