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#286700 - 10/10/17 12:57 PM Re: Fitness over 60 [Re: Chisel]
Montanero Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 10/14/08
Posts: 1118
Loc: North Carolina
Hey, I am no expert.

First is to get a complete physical, know what you are dealing with. What are your limitations and constraints, what are you requirements? This impacts diet and exercise.

Eat well. I tend to stay away from processed foods as much as possible, as much because I like fresh more as anything else. The body needs nutrients, give your body what it needs. Just don't give it more than it needs. Diet will need to be tailored to the individual's needs and restrictions. As we get older, we need less food, but more nutrition.

Exercise. Again, your particular circumstances and health will drive how you exercise. I will venture to say that you should get as much intensity as you can, within your health limitations. I work for both strength and endurance, pushing hard for extended periods. I try to work my entire body. This has been difficult due to my somewhat numerous injuries, which place some significant limitations on what I can do. At one point, I lost the use of my legs, and was told I would end up in a wheelchair. That was 13 years ago, and I am still walking, but I do not run. Too much impact on the spine. I walk and use machines to try to increase my endurance through increased intensity of the exercise. Everyone has to understand themselves and their own unique circumstances, and adapt an exercise program accordingly. I will say that you should get as much intensity as you can.

Mental Health. The references I posted earlier are a good beginning. Making accurate causal attributions, developing a mindset that can grow, is important. The brain is an amazing thing, and it needs to be worked like a muscle. Injuries and problems can be fixed to a larger extent than we believed 10 or 20 years ago. Even problems with anxiety and depression can be helped. You need to want to do it though. You have to make the effort. Constant learning is a great way to exercise the brain, especially as we get older. Exposure to new experiences and new learning can help to stave off some or the problems we have as we get older. I do recommend meditation. I was actually taught as part of a military program a long time ago that he'd the intent to see how the mind can overcome physical limitations. It worked for that to some extent, but it is a great way to deal with stress and develop mindfulness. Mindfulness is simply being more aware of everything, inside and out. And understanding what it is you are aware of. Emotions, like anxiety, can be wrongly attributed. An understanding of yourself and an awareness of what you are feeling and what is going on around you can avoid making such mistakes. If you are up to it, I recommend at least a basic level of understanding of how the brain functions. That alone can help you understand what is really going on when you feel something, especially something that feels bad. I know that it sounds kind of squishy, but there is a lot of good scientific research to support this, and they are learning more all the time.

#286701 - 10/10/17 05:20 PM Re: Fitness over 60 [Re: Montanero]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 5923
Loc: southern Cal
I am no expert, either, but I have experience in the +60 area...

First of all, I agree with Montanero's comments, especially working with your doctor - very important.

It is critical to become,and remain, active. Almost anything will do, and will be better than inactivity. Gardening and housekeeping are two mundane activities that are often recommended.

Aerobic activity is critical, and walking is easy to undertake. Hopefully, there is somewhere 'outside" that will work for you. A treadmill in a small man cave sounds rather difficult.

Search around and find routines that work for you.Consistency is critical...You need aerobics, strength (weights/pushups, etc) and flexibility/stretching working together for the best benefits.
Geezer in Chief

#286702 - 10/10/17 05:59 PM Re: Fitness over 60 [Re: hikermor]
bws48 Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/18/07
Posts: 812
Loc: Anne Arundel County, Maryland
At 69, I have to also agree that you first talk to your doctor. Assuming an OK there, I am really a big advocate of simply walking, either treadmill or outside. I use both. The treadmill gives me consistency in angle, speed etc to measure progress. Outside walking (for me) seems to work the muscles slightly differently than the treadmill, which helps. Also, I find walking outside cheers me up.

Whatever you choose, IMO the most important thing is consistency and patience. Start slowly and as it becomes routine and easy, slowly increase the effort. Positive results will come slowly, but they will come.
"Better is the enemy of good enough."

#286703 - 10/10/17 06:51 PM Re: Fitness over 60 [Re: Chisel]
Russ Online   content
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 4554
Switching gears and remembering my work-outs for high school wrestling...

No weights, no machines but a lot of intense calisthenics. Push-ups, sit-ups, running in place et al in rapid order, then repeat over and over again. When we ran it was up and down stairs. Your body is a weight.

#286704 - 10/10/17 06:56 PM Re: Fitness over 60 [Re: Chisel]
Montanero Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 10/14/08
Posts: 1118
Loc: North Carolina
Your body weight and 2 or 3 chairs can accomplish a lot.

#286734 - 10/13/17 02:01 AM Re: Fitness over 60 [Re: Chisel]
acropolis5 Offline

Registered: 06/18/06
Posts: 321
I’m 68 and I had a spinal fusion (4 screws, 2 bars) 11 months ago. I’m in very good shape for a man of 50. I eat relatively well and I do not smoke or drink. A good diet really helps. Get some guidance in this respect.
You can have pretty good arms/ chest/ & gut, with a 28”-30” blow-up exercise ball, a thin full length roll up floor mat, and 2 dumb bells to which you can add weight as you progress . Look-up the range of exercise with these items on Google or get a few lessons from a trainer. Then start slow, and do your exercises religiously 3 times a week. Work up a good sweat. But,do not exercise to exhaustion.

For aerobic exercise, power walking , outside, on mixed hill/ flat terrain, wearing wrist weights ( start with 1/2lb.), will get and keep you heart/lung strong. Get the book “ Power Walking” for details on walking style and progressive programs. Steady progress is the key. Again, walk sweaty, but not to exhaustion.

If you must walk inside , use an adjustable , powered treadmill, rowing machine or an elliptical with arms. The elliptical is the lowest impact. The rowing machine is the smallest, least expensive and best all around exercise. But rowers are BORING I/M/O. Upbeat music or TV helps with boredom and provides motivation.

I work in a high stress professional environment. When I gave up using liquor and tobacco as tranquilizers, going to the gym became my physical and mental lifesaver. Working up a good sweat is a great antidote for a day when, “...the bear eats you!”

Remember, you are not competing with or comparing yourself with anyone else. If you get past the first 3-4 weeks and start to feel and see the difference in your mind & body, you likely to get hooked ona healthy regime, which just keeps getting better and better.

Good luck.

Edited by acropolis5 (10/13/17 02:07 AM)

#286745 - 10/14/17 05:56 AM Re: Fitness over 60 [Re: Chisel]
rafowell Offline

Registered: 11/29/09
Posts: 202
Loc: Southern California
Classic Nordic Track ski machine plus Powerblock dumbbells?[2]

That's what I have.

My main aerobic exercise is walking outdoors, but for high-intensity aerobics I've used a classic Nordic Track ski machine since the late 1990s. I don't fold mine up, but it is made to do so to slide under a bed, and I'm told it can be stored vertically folded up with some modification[1]

I like the ski machine because it is low impact, I get some arm exercise, and I can read on my iPhone while I exercise. It takes a little getting used to - I first tried it out in a gym where they had a trainer until I got the hang of it, then purchased one.

I pace indoors, too - we have a long enough straight space to make that practical while I read.

I bought the Powerblock dumbbells to have a lot of flexibility with a compact set, though since I bought the vertical stand, I don't know that I'm saving that much space.

[1] http://www.instructables.com/id/Closet-Storage-for-a-Ski-Machine-and-Other-Modific/

[2] http://www.powerblock.com/Classic%2050%20Set.php
A signal mirror should be backup for a 24 hr, all-weather radio distress signal, such as a 406 MHz PLB (ACR PLB)

#286749 - 10/14/17 02:00 PM Re: Fitness over 60 [Re: rafowell]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 5923
Loc: southern Cal
Good old Nordic Track! I actually wore one out, but it took about fifteen years. It was a perfect wau to train for the West Butress Route on Denali....
Geezer in Chief

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