According to the American College of Sports Medicine, seniors need a total of 150 minutes a week of moderate physical activity to stay healthy. This may sound like a lot of time, but it’s actually only two and a half hours per week. And, “moderate physical activity” doesn’t need to be complicated. It includes exercises as simple as taking a brisk walk.
Walking can help you maintain a healthy weight, prevent or manage health conditions, strengthen bones and muscles – good for balance and coordination – and boost mood! Walking faster, farther, and with more intensity can increase these health benefits greatly, helping you have more endurance and a stronger body.
Beginning a walking routine with a wonderful fitness stride is easy. First, make sure that you have comfortable clothing and shoes that offer support, flexibility, and protection. Pay attention to your posture, keeping your stomach tight and back straight. When walking, look straight ahead, relax, and do not stiffen your shoulders or keep them in a shrugged position. Swing your arms, bending your elbows to add intensity and power to your walk.
Once you’ve gotten the hang of it, boost your motivation by joining a walking group, partnering with a walking buddy, or attending a walking event in your community. Enjoy the journey as you walk your way to a healthier, happier life!
By Yanasa Grubbs, Health Fitness Specialist