Age And Activity Shouldn’t Be Strangers

I’m a people person. I’m far more comfortable getting out and about, talking to staff and meeting people than I am being holed up in my office. Although this might also be down to a profound dislike of paperwork.

I’m also a huge fan of celebrating human achievement. People are capable of amazing things. I’ve always believed that. A story I heard about one of our members has made me believe it even more.

Brian, 70-year-old retired teacher, has just celebrated his 1000th session at the gym since suffering a heart attack 8 years ago. He’s become a regular face at the centre, working out for 90 minutes at least three times a week, his sessions involving time on the treadmill, bikes and rowers, as well as leg extensions, bicep curls, shoulder presses and wall push-ups.

Having never been “a gym goer”, it isn’t like Brian simply returned to old habits. Instead, he created a new reality byquite literallytaking it one step at a time, building on his cardiac rehabilitation programme to set himself new exercise goals.

Brian’s achievements are brilliant. To come back from such a significant health hurdle and not only recover, but excel, is inspirational.

A recent US project, involving 70-to-90 year olds, found that adding just one extra hour a of moderate exercise to a weekly routine significantly reduces the likelihood of developing mobility disabilities. Another report, published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, has revealed that moderate exercise (aerobic and strength) three times a week improves cognitive functions such as memory, attention and task performance in the over 50s.

The message is clear. Age is no barrier to exercise, indeed, it is a reason to embrace it. So why don’t we?

The reality is that we see Brian, a gym regular in his 70s, as an exception to the rulethe rule being that as we age, aches, pains and the natural wear and tear we all come by, means we are less able to be physically fit and enjoy exercise. So we don’t do any. In fact, earlier this year, Public Health England revealed that 41% of adults aged between 40 and 60 walk less than 10 minutes continuously each month at a brisk pace. Things need to change.

When is the NHS going to start talking, and I mean having serious conversations, with people like Brian to ask them one simple question –

Source:: The Huffington Post – UK Lifestyle

(Visited 5 times, 1 visits today)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *