Let’s face it. We all hate getting old. We hate the idea of getting old. We hate the reality of getting old. And we want to stop aging in its tracks and get back to living like we did when we were young. And while every generation has faced this same issue, with the Baby Boomer generation nearing their golden years, there are more people than ever interested in ways to reverse the symptoms of aging. So how do you do it, reverse aging? Well unfortunately there aren’t any tricks or magic pills to swallow (yet– research into HGH, human growth hormone, and other drugs are producing some interesting tidbits of information on this subject), so you’ve got to do it the old fashioned way and exercise. Yes, exercise. It might not be easy, but you can reduce and even reverse signs of aging with a few simple exercises done on a consistent basis.
Why exercise? Exercise not only helps your body to look good, but it helps the muscles, joints, and bones to become healthier. Weight bearing exercises, such as walking, jogging, or aerobics not only build muscle tissue, they strengthen bones and help to reduce osteoporosis. Movement of all kinds helps to keep joints supple, reducing pain, increasing mobility, and increasing range of motion. And sustained exercise that builds up a bit of a sweat helps to keep the heart healthy, reducing the risk of heart disease. The more you stay active and fit, the less the symptoms of aging will affect you. You can even turn back the clock on things like bone loss, heart disease, appearance of skin, and energy levels with a bit of exercise.
Many Baby Boomers are reluctant to start exercising, particularly if they’ve been inactive for a while, because they think it’s got to be strenuous and difficult. But exercise to reverse aging doesn’t have to be. Simply getting up and moving for 30 minutes a day is enough to make a change, and once you start to get active, you’ll find that it’s easier to get more active.
Start with going for a walk at a pace you can sustain for 30 minutes and do this every day. When that becomes easy, pick up the pace. Add 10 minutes until you can walk for an hour. Grab some hand weights or a weighted vest to make it a bigger challenge, or include hills or stairs into your walk. You can also head to the gym and hit the elliptical machines, running machines that are designed specifically to reduce stress on joints, allowing you to pick up the pace without damaging knees and ankles. Cardio exercise is particularly important for Baby Boomers because the flow of blood through the body that occurs when you do cardio moves all sorts of important nutrients through your body more effectively. It causes vascular dilation, and this can lead to glowing skin that looks years younger. Walking or jogging also reduces bone loss and improves heart health. Plus, it gets your body mobile, allowing joints to move more freely and efficiently. Mix in a little bit of stretching before and after or with a weekly Yoga class, and you’re going to look and feel younger in no time.
Weight lifting is also beneficial to Baby Boomers looking to reverse the signs of aging as it builds muscle tissue and helps increase joint mobility. The added muscle tissue boosts metabolism and increases energy levels, and it makes your body appear supple and strong. Start with weight machines in the gym. If you’ve never worked out before, this may seem daunting. But most gyms have easily adjusted machines that are easy for beginners, and they offer initial orientation programs that allow you to learn the gym from day one.
Until a magic pill is created, Baby Boomers are going to have to exercise their way to looking and feeling younger. A little bit of sweat can vastly improve your quality of life, both the way you look and the way you feel, and it can make all the difference in your overall wellness. So get out and get moving.