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John A. Mays, MSEd
Midlife The Importance Of Exercise
Fitness Together

Midlife The Importance Of Exercise

Regular exercise has tremendous benefits at any stage of life. Heading into middle age, we may feel that this is the time for some slowing down, but doctors say exercise is now more important than ever.

The good news is that the best exercises for middle aged adults don't have to be unpleasant or difficult. Since any activity that gets your body moving is fair game, you have plenty of fun choices when finding the best exercises for your lifestyle.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends a moderate level of physical activity at least five days per week. As you get started, goal-setting can really come in handy.

Set a goal to exercise for 10 minutes each day of the week, and work up to 15 minutes the next week, then more until you reach 30 to 60 minutes a day. Reward yourself when you make your goals. Your physician may be able to help you set and meet your goals.

Be sure to talk to your doctor as you begin a new exercise regimen, as she may have additional resources or tips to help you get started.

As we age we begin to lose muscle and bone mass. According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, muscles burn more calories while at rest.

This means that having more muscle mass allows your body to burn more calories while you are resting. Because of this, strength or resistance training is crucial for middle-aged adults who are suffering from the effects of slower metabolisms, hormonal changes and aging.

While two days a week of strength training is a minimum, the academy recommends training each muscle group two days a week.

As a general rule, the major groups include the upper and lower body and the core (lower back/abs).

As you gain confidence, you may advance to a formal exercise program with a trainer. They will help you achieve your fitness goals quickly and safely while at the same time making exercise fun.

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