Fitness Over 40

Benefits of Exercise for Baby Boomers and Seniors

Posted by LeeAnn Langdon on Tue, Oct 04, 2011 @ 05:02 PM

Why do people exercise? Well, once it's a habit, people exercise because it feels good, but abenefits of exercise lot of people begin an exercise program because they want to lose weight. If you're overweight, losing even a few pounds is a good thing, but there are lots of other reasons to exercise. If you're a Baby Boomer or Senior (heck, even if you're a twentysomething), regular exercise offers many benefits that will improve the quality of your life.

Let's face it, losing weight suggests deprivation and punishment. Many people are more successful at losing weight if they focus instead on gaining some of the other benefits of exercise, and letting the weight loss happen in its own time (and it will, if you keep it up and exercise a little common sense and portion control).

To get you started, here are 32 other benefits of exercise that you may not realize. Maybe something here will motivate you to get started.

  1. reduce stress
  2. sleep better
  3. lower blood pressure
  4. manage blood sugar
  5. improve your sense of self-efficacy
  6. improve flexibility
  7. improve balance
  8. maintain independence
  9. increase muscle mass
  10. increase metabolism
  11. reduce risk of heart disease
  12. reduce risk of dementia
  13. improve social connections
  14. increase endurance and stamina
  15. improve bone density
  16. decrease body fat
  17. decrease resting heart rate
  18. increase responsiveness to insulin
  19. increase lung capacity
  20. reduce anxiety
  21. improve body image
  22. increase libido
  23. alleviate depression
  24. speed up reaction time
  25. reduce risk of Type 2 diabetes
  26. reduce risk of stroke
  27. speed up gastrointestinal transit time
  28. improve blood lipid profiles
  29. enhance glucose utilization
  30. improve low back pain
  31. improve joint function and decrease arthritis pain
  32. increase size and number of cell mitochondria

What made you start your exercise program? Are you seeing any of these benefits of exercise in your own life? Share your story in the comments!

(photo credit: Lisa F. Young)


Tags: Baby Boomer, exercise, weight loss, body image, osteoporosis, bone density, senior exercise, cardiovascular exercise, flexibility, Type 2 diabetes

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