Exercise is essential to maintaining health regardless of age. It can help you to maintain weight, lower blood pressure, prevent heart disease, and so much more! Though for many seniors, the idea of exercising might seem intimidating due to mobility issues or concerns about falling. That being said, you don’t have to hit up the gym or join a high intensity fitness class in order to work out. In fact, walking is great cardio exercise and has many benefits! Plus, it is low impact, which makes it the perfect choice for seniors.
If you are a resident of senior living in Harrison Township, we want to take a few minutes to discuss just how great walking can be for older adults. Keep reading to learn more!
Benefit #1: Improved Heart Health
Did you know that heart disease is the number one cause of death in the United States? While that is a harrowing statistic, it is important to note. Cardiovascular health should be a top priority for everyone, but especially seniors. Adults over the age of 65 are at an elevated risk for developing heart disease or suffering from a stroke.
Even walking 20-30 minutes at a brisk pace each day elevates the heart rate. This works to combat heart problems, including decreasing the risk of developing high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and even diabetes. Walking daily can actually lower the risk of heart disease anywhere from 30-50%. Now that’s a pretty good reason to lace up your sneakers!
Benefit #2: Reduced Pain
If you are someone who suffers from arthritis or other joint pain issues, you know how debilitating it can be at times. On more than one occasion, you’ve probably felt as though you couldn’t even walk across the house, let alone walk for extended periods of time. However, sometimes the best way to combat joint pain is by getting up and moving around. Staying sedentary only forces joints to become more stiff.
Don’t worry – as mentioned above, walking is low impact. This means it won’t be too hard on your joints. Just make sure when you’re strolling around the senior living in Harrison Township that you are wearing comfortable walking shoes. This will help reduce the impact as well.
Benefit #3: Improved Mental Health
Have you ever had a bad day and someone told you to ‘walk it off’? Well, there may actually be some truth to that statement. Walking, and exercising in general, is an excellent way to relieve stress, ease depression symptoms, and improve one’s overall mood and mental health. The endorphins that your brain produces when walking helps combat these negative thoughts and feelings.
Not only that, but if you’re walking out in nature, that’s an added bonus! Fall weather is here meaning it’s the perfect time to head outdoors and get some fresh air. Remember, The Parkdale is a pet-friendly senior living community and we are sure your pup would love to get out and about with you!
Benefit #4: Socialize With Others
While some folks might prefer to make a playlist of their favorite tunes for when they walk, others might enjoy a little company. One of the best things about senior living in Harrison Township is that there is always someone around that you can hang out with! Grab one or more of your friends and schedule a time to walk. Maybe you could go in the morning after breakfast or sometime in the middle of the afternoon, whichever works best for your schedule!
For many older adults, senior isolation is a very real concern. It can lead to some serious health risks, including severe depression, increased anxiety, and an elevated risk for developing dementia, heart disease, and other ailments. Humans are social creatures, so don’t be afraid to use a daily walk as a good excuse to spend time with a beloved friend or family member!
Benefit #5: No Cost
One of the best parts about walking is that it’s free! You don’t have to join an expensive gym or pay a bunch of money to be a part of a workout program. Instead, all you have to do is grab your shoes and head out the front door! Most walking trails and parks are public property, meaning that you can access them at any time without paying an entry fee.
If you don’t mind spending a little money, you could always invest in a good pair of sturdy shoes. Wireless headphones could be another expense if you’re looking to listen to music or podcasts while you exercise. You could also purchase a smart watch to help you keep track of calories burned and miles walked. However, none of these items are necessary.
Start Walking Today!
If you are a senior and you are concerned about your health, then don’t wait any longer. The best time to begin is today! Create a routine and do your best to stick to it. For beginners, it is a good idea to start slow, especially if you have any mobility issues. Even if you walk for ten minutes around the block the first week, you can build up to more time or a further distance.
Talk to your doctor if you have any health concerns about exercising. For example, if you have recently undergone any kind of surgery or operation. Your doctor might suggest a cane or walker to begin with. Or you may need to wear something like a knee brace. If you do, that’s okay! Just make sure you listen to your physician’s recommendations.
Contact The Parkdale
If you’re ready to be a part of the best senior living in Harrison Township, be sure to take a closer look at what we offer here at The Parkdale. We have several different senior care options you can choose from, including independent living, enhanced living, memory care, and respite care. All residents are welcome to use our paved walking paths and participate in our fun activity calendar. Put your health and wellbeing first and contact us today!