I’ve talked about it before …

The importance of exercise — and especially strength training — as we get older.

Just in case you don’t believe ol’ John Henry, I ran across this article today from the National Academy of Sports Medicine, which is where I got my personal trainer certification a few years ago.

Guess what the article is about?

That’s right — the importance of exercise for seniors.

Here’s what is says in the beginning:

“As you get older, if you don’t keep up with it, you will lose it. Peak bone mass is reached around age 30 and stable until 50, and after that there’s a decline. But the good news is that bone loss can be minimized, and you can increase muscle mass at any age. Here is a breakdown of how you can stay motivated to stay fit after 50.”

I told you so …

So here are a few things NASM recommends to help folks motivate themselves to get off the couch and get fit:

  • Fitness help you become more productive: Exercise can produce hormones like epinephrine, which increases energy. It keeps our mind young and decreases the risk of dementia. Even if you feel tired and sluggish, going for a run, a walk, lifting weights, or any other type of exercise will leave you feeling better and more energized. Try it!
  • Feel better and look better: who doesn’t want to feel good and look good? Improving yourself physically leads to better mental fitness. Feeling good about yourself, not only because of improvement in the way you look but also because of your improved self-discipline.
  • Live longer and enjoy a strong quality of life: unfortunately, many — most? — chronic diseases at the top of the list occur as a result of lifestyle choices. Exercise helps prevent these things from happening, and also improves existing conditions. Strong and healthy seniors maintain their independence!
  • It can be fun: I heard someone say a long time ago that they would take up jogging as soon as they saw someone running with a smile on their face. I agree. I don’t like jogging — and my knees don’t like it, either. But I do enjoy riding a stationary bike and lifting weights. Not only do those things help keep me fit, looking better, feeling better, all that good stuff. It also helps me as a Masters track and field athlete — specifically pole vaulting. Maybe you used to be an athlete, but you gave it up because you thought you were too old. Pshaw! I watched a 97-year-old woman set a world record in the 200-meter run at the National Senior Games in Albuquerque. It’s never too late!!!

So there you go.

Me and NASM agree.

Just look at my client in the photo below, showing off her new muscles.

Very cool …