Staying active past 50: summer activities for KAA-Boomers

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Summer is here and your plans to shape up can be delayed no longer. But no worries. The warm weather will draw you outside, so you no longer have any excuses not to be more active!  The following four activities can be enjoyed at any level of fitness or age range. So get out there and get moving!

Four Tips to Prevent Injury

  • Check with your doctor. Before you start any fitness or exercise program be sure to discuss it with your doctor. Medical professionals can advise you on what to avoid, especially if you’ve had any previous orthopaedic injuries or health issues.
  • Start slowly. It’s easy to get caught up in the joy and freedom summer brings. Remember to start any new activity slowly and, as your body adjusts, increase your speed or number of repetitions in small increments.
  • Always warm up. Before you begin any strenuous activity, always warm up and do light stretches. This will help to prevent damage to muscles, tendons and joints by increasing flexibility.
  • Listen to your body. If your body is complaining, chances are you are overworking it. If you don’t listen your body will get even with you.

Walking

This is one of the easiest forms of exercise available, since it is can be incorporated into every aspect of your daily life whether you’re at home, at the office or anywhere!  You don’t need a treadmill or special walking trail, just put on some comfortable shoes and walk out the door. To reap the greatest benefits for your efforts, set time, distance or speed goals for yourself. Commit to walking five or 10 minutes every day or every other day. There is no need to get winded. Stroll along slowly. You’ll be surprised at how quickly your body will adjust, and you’ll automatically increase your speed and lengthen your time. If you’ve been diligently using a treadmill you‘ll be delighted at how quickly the time passes outdoors as you enjoy your new surroundings.

Running/jogging

Proceed with care if you are new to running or jogging. Though the same stipulations apply to running as to walking, there is a greater risk of injury from strains, sprains, and falls. Treadmill users will adapt to the outdoors quite readily, however, those who lead a more sedentary lifestyle should begin by limiting their running to very short distances and slower paces.

Biking

Almost everyone remembers the childhood exhilaration of feeling the wind on their face as they mastered riding a bike. This feeling need not be limited to youth. Many cities have biking trails which offer a safe environment to take advantage of this wonderful summer exercise. If biking trails are not available in your neighbourhood, check for local regulations on safe biking, and, of course, always wear a helmet.

Swimming

Just moving against in the gentle resistance of water is good exercise and if you are a good swimmer so much the better. Swimming uses upper, middle, and lower muscles, giving you a complete body workout in minimal time. If you haven’t quite mastered swimming, check with local organizations for classes. Many cities offer beginning and intermediate classes through their recreation departments.

Four Tips to Stay Healthy

  • Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of fluids while exercising, especially if the weather is hot or you are sweating excessively.
  • Stay cool. Don’t overdue it. On hot days pursue cooler activities such as walking or swimming. Avoid heatstroke.
  • Stay protected. Wear protective clothing and sunscreen. Sunburn doesn’t have to be synonymous with summer.
  • Stay safe. Outside activities can distract you. Remain watchful for other pedestrians, bikers, and automobiles.

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