Numerous scientific studies have concluded that people over 40 who get regular exercise live longer and are less likely to suffer physical disability than those who choose not to exercise. You don’t need to join an expensive healthy club or gym to enjoy the numerous benefits from regular exercise.
Millions enjoy running most days of the week. It gives them time to themselves and helps alleviate stress. All you need to get started is a good pair of running shoes. Ease yourself into the habit by starting with a brisk paced walk. After you’ve warmed up, jog slowly for a minute or two, and then return to walking for another few minutes. Gradually cut your walking time and increase your jogging time by a minute or two until you feel comfortable jogging for 20 to 30 minutes straight.
Take your time and don’t overdo it in the early weeks. Pushing yourself too hard can be counterproductive or lead to injury. At first you might want to go three times per week. As you gradually build your endurance and your muscles you can safely add another day or two to your weekly schedule. Give your body the rest it needs and always stretch before and after your run. Many runners like to walk for 10 minutes after their run to cool down.
The price of gas seems to be going up again. Maybe this Spring is just the right time to get back on your bicycle for a great aerobic workout. If you haven’t been on a bike for a while. you might want to build confidence with some short-distance rides. If your journey takes you on highly travelled roads – wear something bright so drivers can easily see you.
Some ideas to help you get going:
1) View workouts as time for yourself, rather than as a chore. On days when you’re unmotivated, promise yourself to exercise for just ten minutes. After getting started, you’ll probably do much more.
2) Whether you want to lose a few pounds or enhance your physical performance, set yourself up for morale building victories by establishing short-term goals and rewarding yourself as you reach each milestone. Buy yourself a new outfit after you drop that first ten pounds. Or take the family out to your favorite eatery after you run your first complete mile – or two! Keep your goals reasonable and you’ll reach them sooner! Then, set new goals!
3) Vary your workouts with different exercises. Have you tried yoga or swimming? Many healthy fitness lovers enjoy the benefits from low-impact water exercises. Choose different exercise routines and gradually build your times and intensity. Or try a new sport. Give your body a variety of thrills and make it fun! Your fitness habits will be much easier and hopefully last you a lifetime – if you enjoy the journey!
4) See yourself accomplishing your goal. Visualize your success. Imagine how you’ll feel slipping into a new smaller size or walking down the beach in that really hot new swimsuit! Hang a picture of someone in a bikini on your refrigerator. Every time you go to the ice-box you’ll have a pleasant reminder to eat healthy foods!
5) Take pictures along the way to document your progress. This is a powerful strategy not to let go of your goal.