Walking Tips for Seniors
Everyone knows the importance of getting exercise. But, as you age, the options for improving cardiovascular health can seem limited. Starting a new exercise routine isn’t always the best course of action. Luckily, walking is a simple, heart-healthy option that is always available regardless of age.
How to Start a Walking Routine
While walking is a relatively simple exercise routine, it can also quickly become boring. Learn how to easily start a routine that you can keep up with and that will keep you engaged.
- Mix things up – Alternate movements by walking sideways, backward, and crossing one foot over another to keep things interesting. Only do this if you are sure you are steady and try switching things up every few minutes to keep it interesting.
- Work towards a goal – Whether you join a walking 5k or create personal goals for yourself, you will feel more committed if you have a specific goal to motivate you each day.
- Listen to an audiobook – If you are walking for a long time, it’s easy to get lost in your own thoughts. Try listening to music or an audiobook to help you stay distracted and engaged.
- Find a buddy – As with most things, exercise is more fun with a friend. Try to enlist someone to join you for daily walks. You can keep each other company and keep each other motivated to continue the routine.
- Incorporate resistance – If you get to a point where you are no longer feeling challenged, it might be a good time to introduce light ankle weights, hills, or a resistance band.
Health Benefits of Walking
Need a little additional motivation to get moving? There are a variety of health benefits for seniors when it comes to walking. Not only is walking easy on the joints and limits the risk of injury, but it’s so easy to get started.
Below are some of the other reasons walking is the best form of exercise for older adults:
- Walking can be just as effective as running
- Walking improves cardiovascular health
- Walking combats obesity
- Walking improves the immune system
- Walking can add years to a senior’s life
- Walking can reduce pain from common ailments
Make walking a healthy part of your daily routine. Start slow and work your way up to more challenging commutes. Don’t be afraid to join a recreation center or gym to continue your routine into the winter months.
Finding Senior Support from McGregor PACE
At McGregor PACE, we provide services that address the medical, rehabilitative, social, and personal care needs of Cuyahoga County seniors, ages 55 and over. It is our goal to offer the support and services that participants need most.