Nancy Cox, Roy Englert, Betty Goedhart, Marie Neaves, and David Kucherawy–do these names sound familiar?
If you have no idea who they are, here’s a clue: They’re all seniors. They’re also older athletes who got into their respective sports in their golden years.
While these folks are inspiring, you shouldn’t feel pressure about being an athlete like them. It’s enough that you work out regularly because it’s only by being consistent that you’ll see the benefits of your hard work.
That said, let’s talk about cardio for seniors, its benefits, and tips on safely performing exercises.
What Is Senior Cardio?
Cardio for seniors is also called heart-healthy workouts. That’s because these exercises get the heart rate up. Most people incorporate cardio in their training routine to lose weight. However, it provides other benefits.
These include delaying the effects of aging and cutting down one’s risk of developing cardiovascular conditions. For seniors, the recommendation is to do cardio for at least 20 to 30 minutes, 3 to 5 days a week.
Now, if you’re starting your senior fitness journey, be sure to consult your doctor. While aerobics or cardio exercises are beneficial to all ages, you can still overdo it if you choose an activity that’s too intense for your current fitness level. Some activities to consider are brisk or power walking, swimming, gardening, and cycling.
More on the Benefits of Heart-Healthy Workouts
Don’t forget. The heart is a muscle. If you train it well, it doesn’t have to work as hard to pump blood.
Regular cardio also enhances sleep quality, increases bone density, and helps lower stress. It can also improve your sex life in various ways.
These include enhancing your body image, aiding sexual dysfunction related to circulation issues, and improving your body’s ability to become or maintain arousal.
Cardio for Seniors: Some Safety Tips to Remember
Many fitness tips for seniors don’t only apply to cardiovascular exercises. If you plan to do strength training as well, you need to follow safety precautions.
First, always warm up. Any exercise puts stress on the body. You could injure yourself if your body isn’t prepared to handle that stress.
Second, don’t work out if you’re feeling under the weather. While you’re sick, exercising increases your risk of injury and can make your condition worse.
Rest, especially when your doctor recommends it. To learn more, don’t hesitate to ask your physician. Other safety tips to keep in mind include making sure your workout area is clutter-free, breathing correctly, and building up your routine sensibly (i.e., starting with low-impact exercises before increasing intensity level and frequency).
Keep Your Heart Happy and Healthy
Did you learn a lot about cardio for seniors? If yes, that’s fantastic.
Should you need more tips on how to keep the heart healthy, be sure to ask a medical professional, preferably your doctor, who knows your health history.
For more information on working out, keeping fit, and staying young, many online resources can help. You can also browse our site to check our health-related articles.