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Exercise Ideas for the Older Crowd

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Middle-aged doesn’t mean middle-health’d.

My favorite thing about being young is that I still have my youthful metabolism. I don’t gain much weight from food because my body just burns it all off naturally. When I get older and that goes away, things are probably going to be a little less pleasant for me. Your body changes as you get older; certain processes stop or slow down, and sometimes you need to give your body a very particular smack to get it going, kind of like a tube TV. This is also why it can be a little harder to work out when you hit 50; your body just doesn’t respond to high-intensity workouts the way it used to. That’s okay, though, because there are always other options out there, and in places you may not have considered.

According to cardiologist Dr. Karol Watson, the best exercise you can start a kit with once you hit 50 years old is distance walking. Walking is one of the most universal workouts out there, and just about anyone can do it. All you need is two legs and a song in your heart.

“Walking has all of the same health benefits of more intense exercises such as running,” Dr. Watson told Well and Good. “You can achieve the benefits faster with, say, running, but the benefits are the same.”

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Walking is also ideal for older folks because it’s less risky. The worst thing that could happen to you while walking is you might trip. With full blast running, you could pull a muscle or roll your heel. The last thing you need when you’re 50 is more muscle aches, or at least that’s what my dad tells me.

“But,” you may ask, “isn’t just walking painfully boring?” Too true. That’s why you gotta have some fun with it! Put on your favorite motivational jams and walk to the beat. Find a scenic forest path and take in the nature. Download a streaming class and walk along with an instructor and group. It’s such a simple exercise that the variation possibilities are endless!

So don’t just sit there morning your inability to bench an entire cow. You may be old, but you’ve still got a spark in you. Get walking!

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