According to Sir Isaac Newton’s First Law of Motion, “a body in motion will remain in motion.” But have you thought about it in terms of your own mobility? If you don’t keep moving, you too will cease to stay a body in motion.
Mobility is the key to independence as you grow older, such as being able to drive, cook, and perform day-to-day activities like getting in and out of a chair. Mobility can decline with age, but according to the CDC, one in four Americans who are now 65 years old will live into their 90s, so it’s important to take an active role in preventing the loss.
While there are specific exercises that can promote mobility, the bottom line is that you need to stay active in whatever way you can. “Find an exercise you love. Don’t do something you will hate, because you will stop,” says Katherine Autin, CEO and founder of Parkinson Partners and Visionary Caregivers. It is also helpful to track your progress. Barb Millhollan, community outreach and LIVESTRONG director at the YMCA of Greater Louisville says, “we overestimate how much we move and underestimate how much we eat.” Tracking gives you a realistic picture of what you are doing, and encourages you to stay active.
While it can be daunting to begin to exercise, especially if you feel you are already losing mobility or it has been years since you have worked out, you need to do it, anyway. Ken Gould, vice president of operations at Gould’s Discount Medical, encourages people to not worry about where they are starting. “Different people are at different levels. Start where you are and just keep moving.”
To ensure you stay active, independent, and safe as you age, you must prioritize your mobility and take steps every day (pun intended) to keep moving. Don’t forget that simple activities like walking to the mailbox, dancing to your favorite song, or doing chair exercises count too. Aim for at least 30 minutes of movement each day. If you need to, break it up into 10-minute exercise sessions throughout the day to ensure you stay a body in motion.
BY TAMI PYLES
P.S. Consider these exercises and products as you build your plan to stay motivated.