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How Much Exercise Is Too Much for Seniors?

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Finding a retirement community isn’t about finding somewhere to simply make it through the rest of your life. It’s about living out your golden years and enjoying every minute. Staying active is a big part of enjoying one’s senior years, as it’s a critical aspect of maintaining good health.

Sometimes an aging adult’s body isn’t what it used to be, so it’s crucial they choose exercises that match their ability. And as a matter of safety, a senior should only exercise as much as their bodies are able.

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer for how much exercise is too much because each person is unique. Each person should listen to their body, but as a general rule, extreme fatigue, pain, dizziness, or feeling sick are all signs of overexertion.

Importance of Exercise

It’s important for older adults to continue exercising throughout their senior years. But it’s also critical that a senior takes care when exercising because of the potential for more harm than good is there.

Physical activity—at any age—is important and holds many health benefits, like brain function, heart function, and weight management. On the other hand, there is some evidence that hard training can actually have adverse effects on cardiovascular health.

It’s important to note that this study was performed on top-performing athletes. However, it lends itself to the importance of exercising to your body’s capability.

How Much Exercise Should a Senior Get?

As long as a senior considers the CDC’s recommendations regarding physical activity, there should be few issues unless there are special circumstances, like a health problem. In these situations, it’s a good idea to speak with the doctor first. There may be specific exercises that are more beneficial when someone has a condition like arthritis, for example.

According to the CDC, adults over 64 should have the following weekly activity:

  • The time spent exercising is based on the exercise. Seniors should get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity workouts. Or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity workouts if their body is able. 
  • A minimum of 2 days per week should include strength-building exercises.
  • 3 days per week should include balance-improving exercises.
A group of older women doing yoga together in a park or outdoor setting, promoting social inclusivity and body positivity.

Signs of Too Much Exercise

Before a senior starts their exercise journey, they should see their family doctor to discuss recommended exercises. This should not be a one-time occurrence, though. It’s a good idea for the senior to partner with their doctor and keep them in the loop on health changes.

For example, maybe the doctor recommends a specific exercise. And at first, the senior performs it without a problem, then they begin experiencing pain. Some mild discomfort is normal when building muscle and working out. But a senior’s exercise should never lead to pain.

If it does, they should discontinue that particular activity and talk to their doctor before resuming. They may be able to recommend a modified version.

Other signs of too much exercise include:

  • Injuries
  • Feeling extreme fatigue
  • Needing more rest than usual
  • Losing too much weight
  • Having mood issues, such as depression or anxiety.

It’s important to note that the above signs are not unique to exercising too much, and they could be symptoms of something else. That’s a significant reason that it’s good to include the doctor in exercise goals.

Senior-Friendly Exercises

An aging adult body simply won’t need to work out the same as a younger person to experience the health benefits. Here are a few senior-friendly exercises to consider:

Assisted Living & Exercise

A senior might have an easier time staying active in their older age if they led a healthy, active lifestyle throughout their life. But even the most dedicated health-conscious person can hit a point where it becomes difficult to stay active.

It’s important to surround oneself with loving and dependable people. This may look like friends and family in your home at first, but eventually, the senior may make a move to assisted living. They are still surrounded by a caring and supportive team.

One significant benefit that living in an assisted living senior community may have regarding exercise is extra support. You may have access to extra help ensuring you’re active enough but not overdoing it.

Staying Active at All American Assisted Living

Your choice of retirement community is an important one. You want to ensure you’re joining a community that supports you in all the ways you need—physically, mentally, and spiritually. If you’re considering communities in Enfield, contact us today. Our staff is happy to answer your questions or book a community tour.

Written by kaplan

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