Do you ever wonder how often you should be exercising? Do you feel as though you could be doing more?
The verdict is out for how much older adults aged 65 and older should be exercising a week. You should be aiming to accomplish 2 hour and 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity weekly. Although this may seem intimidating, it is important to keep in mind that there are 168 hours in just one week. Therefore, these exercises can be divided into about 20 minutes a day 7 days a week, 30 minutes a day 5 days a week, or 50 minutes a day 3 days a week. Moderate aerobic exercises include activities such as pushing a lawn mower, cycling and most commonly used, walking. So you may already be exercising without realizing it! However, if you feel as though you can partake in vigorous aerobic exercise, such as running, an hour and 15 minutes weekly will yield the same benefits.
In combination with the aerobic activities you choose, it is important to work on strengthening major muscles as well. The major muscles include legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms. Through strengthening exercises you can build and maintain strong bones, regulate blood sugar and blood pressure, and maintain a healthy weight. Your strength exercises should be done at least 2 times a week, but can be done more. However, strength training doesn’t need to mean just lifting weights! Alternatives can be as simple as carrying heavy loads of groceries, gardening or yoga.
Lastly, you should set aside time on 3 or more days a week to practice balancing. These balance exercises include activities such as holding onto a chair and trying to balance for 10 seconds on one foot.
Please note that you should only partake in exercises that suit you and you feel comfortable doing. Also note, the exercises should not be done in one large segment, but instead can be broken down to make the numbers less intimidating and more manageable.
***Disclaimer: The information in this post is for reference only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical expertise or advice. If you have any concerns about your own or another’s health then please contact your doctor.