Tomorrow, Wednesday May 31, is National Senior Health and Fitness Day. There will be over 100,000 seniors participating in local health and wellness events in over 1,000 different locations throughout the nation. This is the 30th year that this national event has been in operation, and it continues to grow. This year’s theme is “Move More to Do More!” which is a nice way of saying to get your butt up off the couch and move. You’ll find the more you move the more things you’ll be able to do.
Since these local events are sponsored by different types of organizations there is no national central place on the internet where I could find what events are going on in my area. Some of you may have already received notices or have seen advertisements in your local sources of news and information concerning groups that are sponsoring events. I did find that when I googled National Senior Health and Fitness Day for my state I found three places that were doing special exercise events or special swimming events. The great thing about these events is they are free and even have some free food and drinks at some. That would be somewhat counterproductive for me, but since it is a special day maybe I can enjoy while exercising some restraint. The best thing about attending is the chance to see new health and wellness places that might interest you.
There were some pickle ball events which makes sense since this is the new rage for getting out and moving. There are new courts opening up and new organizations forming to support local leagues. I have put off trying out this new sport, but I have many friends who play and sing pickleball’s praises. Evidently it has the right amount of movement for older participants, and from what they say, it will help you move more without wearing you down. I’m sure I’ll be getting involved at some point. It does sound like the ideal sport for seniors.
There are some things I want to share that I thought were quite interesting. As I was searching for fitness day events, I used different search phrases and one I used to produce a great list of nation-wide health and wellness information sources by respected sources. I thought it would be useful to share these links and a little explanation with you. I’ve explored each link and they are safe and useful.
This link and the one below offer good first steps in starting an exercises program. This link offers information about how to get started and what to expect when you exercise after you’re 60.
This is another good source of information on starting an exercise program. It covers the following:
- How much activity do older adults need?
- How older adults can get started with exercise
- Four questions to ask your doctor about exercise
- How to set fitness goals
- Write a plan to add exercise and physical activity to your life
These steps are a great way to get started, a way to commit to turning your good intentions into action.
Good balance is a big indicator of good health. I’ve talked about this in one of my earlier blogs. It is a simple but efficient way to start exercising. This link gives some great exercises for improving your balance.
This link is a whole book on strength training and as I started to do a quick review, I found myself reading more and more and thinking about the exercises they recommended. It is sponsored by the CDC and was developed at Tufts University. I’m not sure you can find a more comprehensive source of information on increasing strength for older adults anywhere, especially not for free. If you want to get serious about getting stronger, this is the way to go.
I’m a big fan of SilverSneakers because it offers access to wellness facilities, like gyms and swimming pools, and classes that can help us stay healthy. These benefits are covered by many Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage) Plans and some Medigap (Medicare supplement) Plans. The SilverSneaker’s web site also offers online exercise classes and a great deal of information on exercise, diet, mental health, etc. Taking advantage of these benefits can be an economical way to accomplish your exercise goals.
I encourage everyone to get up and get involved in some of these fitness day activities. I look at National Senior Health and Fitness Day as another chance for us to be reminded of the importance of physical activity and maybe, just maybe, it will be the spark that motivates us to get off our duffs and start exercising.