We are all told the importance of “Staying Active” throughout our adult lives. While it is equally important through all stages of life, there are increased benefits to staying active as a senior. It may be easier to say ‘no’ to exercise with other commitments and maybe even counter intuitive to you if you are experiencing fatigue doing normal every day activities, BUT, the benefits outweigh the cons and we hope you find reasons below to keep up your fitness routine or create one for yourself!
Staying active reduces the risk of developing chronic disease, and is especially good for the heart. We can actually ward off heart disease by simply walking more! Sedentary lifestyles also can increase our risk for type 2 diabetes, back pain and arthritis. Regular exercise can help lower blood sugar levels and reduce weight. Simple every day movement can assist in maintaining muscle strength and keeping joints moving.
Exercising and staying active every day also helps us maintain good balance which aids in preventing falls. One specific exercise that can help with this is Pietra Fitness. Pietra Fitness is a strengthening and stretching exercise program that features Christian prayer and meditation in the Catholic tradition. We focus on strengthening our bodies and work on balance sequences in our classes. This is a great way to grow in our prayer life and physical life at the same time. We become more in tune with our bodies and improve muscular strength, posture and stability. We strive for every participant to feel refreshed not only spiritually but physically as well.
In addition to working on our balance, finding a group of people to exercise with gives us a sense of belonging. Pietra Fitness live classes meets as a group and friendships are born from weekly interactions with the other participants. This will not only aid and lift your mood, but going to a work out class provides accountability to stay motivated and find the time to stay active. A social life goes hand in hand with staying active.
Staying active with classes and other workout regimens also stimulates your mind. It is important to keep not only our body active but our mind as well. Classes allow us to follow a routine and engage in listening and reacting. As we work out we increase our blood flow throughout our entire bodies and this includes blood flow to the brain. Compared to other “mind body soul” exercises Pietra Fitness does not only relax the mind but also strengthens the mind. Each class has dedicated times for “Scripture that support the importance of strengthening the mind, body and soul”. Each instructor also has his or her students engage in alignment cues that allows the students to engage their minds and how they can modify certain poses. This leads to the mind body connection which stimulates the mind. Stimulating the mind can also help ward off dementia and other mental health disorders.
Last, but not least, staying physically active increases our longevity! We want to be able to enjoy our time as a senior and all life has to offer. By warding off chronic diseases and keeping our mind and soul healthy we are just adding to the time God has given us. The life we have been given is a gift and we want to see each day as such. We want to be able to enjoy these days and not suffer in pain. Keeping healthy and active will increase the happiness and love we feel by engaging with those around us.
It may be scary to start a new routine but the rewards are endless! I encourage you to look at your schedule and find time in your day to stay active every day. If that seems like too much at first, start by just adding one more day a week. Begin to build up to staying active every day. We encourage you to find exercises that you enjoy and not dread. It is supposed to be mood lifting! If you would like to find a community that does Pietra Fitness, I invite you to search our site, PietraFitness.Com. We have a page header called ‘Classes’ that will show you the teachers in your area. If there are currently none in your area, we have videos on our website and we are working on online videos of varying lengths of time and fitness levels. It would be great to start with a DVD if that is your only option and invite a friend over to practice with you. You never know where God may take you! He may even call you to be an Instructor!