JERSEY SHORE - Maintaining physical and mental health are extremely important items on most people's "to do" lists as they get older.
As people age, they generally become less active for a number of reasons including fear of injury and a decrease in many physical attributes.
Exercising for just 20 to 30 minutes a day, however, can increase your mental and physical well-being significantly.
"Exercising for only a short period of time as few as three times per week can seriously reduce the rate at which strength, balance, flexibility and endurance diminish over time," said Steve Hamod, director of Rehab at ManorCare Jersey Shore. "Furthermore, it can have a positive impact on brain activity, which can help slow the development of brain disorders like Alzheimer's."
Exercise does not have to be strenuous to provide an array of benefits.
Things like taking a walk in the park, swimming and gardening all are great ways to gain mental and physical benefits while staying active.
Starting an exercise routine can be difficult, especially if you are not sure what is safe for you.
Here are a few guidelines to follow:
Make sure to consult your physician to see if you are healthy enough to start an exercise plan and ask how much exercise you should be getting per week in order to provide optimum results.
Drink plenty of water before and after each workout.
Eat a well balanced diet in order to ensure that your body gets the right amount of nutrients to help build and maintain muscles and energy levels.
Make sure to stretch and do a warm-up before and after each workout.
Do a combination of both aerobic and anaerobic workouts each week.
Try to exercise at least three times a week.