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  • Writer's pictureCRAIG BRYAN

Take Control of Your Own Health and Fitness

Here’s a “good news, bad news” situation.

The good news: More people over 65 are exercising than ever before.

The bad news: The percentage of mature adults who are physically active remains low – so low, in fact, that the US government calls it a “public health concern.”

We couldn’t agree more. We’re doing everything we can to change that here in our community. But we need YOU to make the biggest impact – for yourself and your family.

‘Everyone Has a Role to Play’

The report from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is meant for various professionals (including those of us in fitness), government officials, urban planners, and experts in fields like transportation. It’s relevant for people in any country.

It gives information about how to help older adults (defined as 65 and above) reach the recommended 150 minutes or more of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity and two days of muscle-strengthening physical activity each week.

“Everyone has a role to play” in encouraging older people to exercise, the report says several times.

And while that’s true, it’s no excuse to look for “somebody else” to step up and do the work for you. No one else can be physically active for you.

Taking responsibility for your own health is essential to enjoying life on your own terms for as long as possible – HOWEVER YOU DEFINE IT.

· For some people, that means being athletic, exercising for fun, and staying in tip-top shape.

· For others, it means being able to enjoy travel, playing with the grandkids, and other fruits of retirement

· Millions more just want to move better, feel better and – yes! – look better. Exercise improves all of that.

It’s up to you.

What Do You Need to Get Moving?

By the year 2030, 1 in 5 people will be at least 65. We are more physically active now than in prior decades, before fitness became a part of the culture for everyday people.

If you’re 65 now, chances are you already know that regularly exercise is good for all aspects of your physical, mental and social health.

And with 1 in 8 people in this cohort experiencing AT LEAST ONE chronic health condition, the need for regular exercise is greater now than at any earlier point.

“The benefits of regular physical activity occur throughout life and are essential for healthy aging,” the report says.

Want more?

· “Physically active older adults live longer on average than inactive older adults.”

· “Physical activity may allow older adults to live independently longer, be healthier, have better quality of life, and need less medical care.”

· “As the older adult population is growing, physical activity can also be an important contributing factor in improving population health and reducing health care costs.”

Do you want to avoid or manage obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, dementia, and more?

Then you need to seize responsibility for your health. That means exercising regularly to have the strength, agility and endurance you need to keep living.

There’s no “bad news” to it.

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