Aging is inevitable, but it doesn’t have to be terrible. There are measures everyone can take to mitigate its effects and slow the process. It is possible to remain physically fit, healthy, mentally sound, and joyful as we age.
Some individuals seem to age more slowly than others. (We’re looking at you, Tom Brady.) How do these vital people remain so young? They eat whole foods; they are engaged in life socially and/or spiritually; they have a positive outlook; and they work out as a matter of routine. Exercise is the most important thing you can do to stave off getting “old” as you age.
Would you engage in daily exercise if it meant feeling younger longer? Exercise is not supposed to be a burden. Humans are made to move. And yet, in our culture, we have a tendency to be sedentary, either because of the work we do or, or because as we get older we falsely believe that we can’t walk, run, jump, lift, balance, stretch, and play the way we used to.
It has long been noticed anecdotally that “exercise nuts” – the men and women who wake up an hour early to get in their run, even in the freezing rain – have more energy, better muscle tone, fewer wrinkles, and an overall youthful glow. Now studies are producing evidence that corroborates what we see (and envy) in those active individuals. Women who exercise for less than 40 minutes and are sedentary for over 10 hours every day have cells that are biologically “older” than women who are less sedentary and exercise more.
Researchers have uncovered a link between exercise, sedentary time, and telomeres, a part of our cells that protect chromosomes from deterioration. As we get older, telomeres get shorter. Short telomeres are associated with heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. We’ve always known that we could strengthen our muscles and our cardiovascular health through exercise, but it’s a surprise to discover that exercise strengthens our bodies on a sub-cellular level too.
What about your mental health as you get older? Would you like to stay quick-witted, able to calculate, articulate, make inferences, and participate in the world? Those who exercise more score higher on cognitive tests, according to another study.
It is imperative to find ways to make physical activity an organic part of your everyday lifestyle. If walking in nature eases your troubled mind, find a way and a time to do it every day. If you are a high energy person with an aggressive edge, try a kickboxing class. If you’re a social type, perhaps you’ll prefer team sports, so join an adult sports league. If you are more of a solitary person, find a home workout program (there are countless options) and make it as much a part of your daily routine as brushing your teeth. You wouldn’t think of going a day without that activity, would you? Well, exercise is for more important toward your overall health.
Evolved Medical believes in living well your entire life. Aging can be wonderfully fulfilling with the proper tools and guidance. Schedule a consultation now to create an age management plan that makes exercise not just a priority, but a lifetime joy.