It's easy to become more sedentary with age, as there are multiple factors that can limit our amount of activity - stiffness, weight issues or even the fear of falling. Exercising becomes more and more crucial after the age of 50 – a Swedish study in 2012 revealed increasing activity levels in later life was the number one way to increase the longevity of life and add on a few years. Having a small walk every day will make you look better, have more energy and feel sharper – yet it’s easier said than done! Sometimes we feel stiff and others we just don’t have the energy, making it easy to be put off and just not bother altogether. Whilst considering we may not ever be the athlete we once were again can be demotivating, there are a few simple ways to improve our desire to work out and get our blood pumping.
Learn to stretch
Whether it’s a walk around the residential care home, a jog down to the shops or even one of the activities on offer in a Barchester home, stretching can make things much easier by improving your range of motion and relieving stress. The older we get the tighter our muscles feel, which is demotivating in itself – if you start the day with a simple stretch you can elongate the body’s muscles and increase blood flow, which will make you feel better physically and mentally. You should floss your teeth daily, but also when you see a bit of food in your teeth – the same applies to stretching; do it every morning, but also when your body doesn’t quite feel right.
Make it fun and social
Everything is easier with your friends – including exercise. If you’re working out with your pals you can motivate each other, distract each other and put more into it, meaning you will both feel better afterwards. In a Barchester care home, you’ll be able to find someone who wants to do exercise with you, even if it’s just a bit of gardening in the beautiful environment we have available.
Keep your independence
We realise that challenges begin to face us as we age – menial tasks become more and more difficult bit by bit, but there’s no doubt remaining active can make you feel much more energetic, therefore mobile and ambulant, which in turn can mean holding onto your independence is easier.
150 minutes of aerobic exercise is recommended for those over 65, which may seem like a challenge – but it doesn’t have to be all at once! Simple changes such as getting up for a stroll in between long periods of being seated can raise your heart rate enough to make a huge difference. If you have managed to motivate yourself and are exercising more, remember the importance of holding onto a balanced diet. This is crucial in maintaining the energy needed for full mobility and exercise.
Barchester offers services that help you enjoy your hard earned retirement whilst staying active, healthy and comfortable. Contact us if you have any questions regarding our care homes near you, or just general queries about our care, we’d love to help!