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Posted on November 20, 2008

Let Exercise Unlock the Door to Better Baby Boomer Fitness

baby boomer fitness

If you’re a Baby Boomer, born between 1946 and 1964, you may be starting to notice a few more creaks and groans in your joints when you get up from your recliner than you did a few years back. Since Baby Boomers are by far the largest segment of our population, at least you have the knowledge that you’re not alone in this. But is there something you can do to improve the quality of your life and increase your longevity while forestalling age-related illnesses? Yes, better Baby Boomer fitness is possible and exercise is the key.

Surveys show that most Boomers aren’t happy with their current level of fitness. Many have come to realize that it’s time to stop focusing so much on looks and begin a workout that focuses on health. Getting fit can help reduce the risk of heart disease, help with weight control as well as blood pressure and cholesterol control and reduce the risk of developing diabetes and osteoporosis. Exercise increases energy levels and helps manage stress. Whether you plan to retire and play with the grandkids, play golf or tennis, travel, or even continue working, getting in shape and having more energy will help you do all of these things more easily and better.

For Boomers beginning an exercise regimen, a plan that alternates three days a week of 30-minute cardiovascular workouts with three days a week of 30-minute resistance training can be a good place to begin your journey towards improving your personal Baby Boomer fitness. On your cardiovascular workout days, walk briskly, ride a bike or work out on elliptical machines if they’re available. Besides helping your heart, these weight-bearing exercises can help maintain or increase bone mass. To help keep yourself from getting bored, try changing your mode of exercise each day.

For your resistance training days, do weight lifting targeted toward a different body area each of the three days. For example, on the first day work the chest, back and biceps, on the next resistance training day, work the shoulders, triceps and abdominals, and on the third day, work on the quads, hamstrings and calves. This schedule will give each body area plenty of recovery time between sessions. Be sure to take your time and work up to higher weights as your muscles get stronger.

For complete Baby Boomer fitness, don’t forget to exercise your mind as well as your body by doing interactive computer games, puzzles and word games. Ride your exercise bike or walk the treadmill while watching Jeopardy or some other mentally challenging program and you’ll be multi-tasking your way to better overall health.

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