As we get older, we may consider ourselves to be in pretty good shape.

Sure, there are things we can’t do anymore as well as we used to, but that’s just part of getting older, right?

Well, yes, of course.

But when you start to notice a decrease in strength, flexibility, balance issues, things like that,

It may be time to start to do something about it before things get worse.

Know what I mean?

Not only is exercise important for keeping us healthy, it also helps us stay active, independent, and just plain feeling better — mentally AND physically.

If you’re already getting some kind of exercise, you’re a step ahead. If not, here are some recommendations for getting started:

  • Do a physical assessment: go out and walk a mile or half-mile and time yourself to see how long it takes; see how many standard pushups you can do; sit on the floor with your legs extended and see how far you can reach toward your toes; measure your waistline. This will give you a starting point for measuring progress.
  • Create a program: consider your goals (lose weight? walk 18 holes of golf? run a 10K? play outside with the grandkids), then map out a plan that includes cardiovascular exercise and strength training. For example, you could walk three times a week and do strength training twice a week). Write everything down, create a schedule, and stick to it.
  • Start slowly: don’t try and overdo it at first. Build up your stamina and strength slowly. Listen to your body. The last thing you want to do is wind up with an injury that prevents you from exercising at all. It takes a long time to recover for us older folks.

Sometimes, starting an exercise program can seem overwhelming, and in the beginning, it can be difficult.

No two ways about that.

Getting in shape is a lot harder than getting out of shape!

But the rewards are there, and they will come.

Start slowly and give yourself time to start seeing results.

You can do it!

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