Health & Wellness / Opinion / Press Releases

AMAC Urges Seniors to Enter Into a ‘Fitness Protection Program’

exercise seniors fitness program protectionYou’ll feel better and it can improve your health, says the senior advocacy organization

WASHINGTON, DC – Americans are living longer than ever before.  The average lifespan in the U.S. has doubled over the past 100 years.  In 1918, you were lucky if you made it past 40 years of age.  Today we’re living into our 80s and the number of people living past 100 is at an all time high.

Fitness expert Jena Walther, Exercise Physiologist at the Scripps Center for Executive Health in La Jolla, CA, says more than half of us who are over 55 don’t even meet the minimum recommended guidelines for exercise.  They lack confidence, are afraid they’ll hurt themselves or are just plain uninterested.  And, it gets worse as they get older.

“In addition to making older folks feel better, the advantages of keeping fit include the ability to prevent some of the more serious diseases associated with aging, including Type 2 Diabetes, cardiovascular disease and even Alzheimer’s,” according to Dan Weber, president of the Association of Mature American Citizens [AMAC].

Weber is encouraging AMAC’s membership to enter into what he calls a “Fitness Protection Program.”   He says, “As we get older we tend to seek ways to avoid activities that involve exertion.  To quote one anonymous wag: the only exercise some people get is jumping to conclusions, running down their friends, sidestepping responsibility, and pushing their luck.  We need to overcome inertia and find ways of improving our heart rates and blood sugar levels by developing good exercise habits.  Of course, it is important to check with your doctor before beginning any regimen that involves strenuous activities.”

Exercise is particularly good at fending off Type 2 Diabetes and other chronic conditions.  The World Health Organization says that a healthy diet, increased physical activity and avoiding tobacco use can prevent 80% of premature heart disease, 80% of type 2 diabetes cases and 40% of cancers.  And, according to the Alzheimer’s Association: “”Exercise or regular physical activity might play a role in both protecting your brain from Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, and also living better with the disease if you have it.”

AMAC suggests that, ideally, your own Fitness Protection Program will include formal exercise routines – even if it is going for a walk around the block.  But being active doesn’t have to be limited to your workout times.  There are plenty of ways to become more active as you go about your day.  For example:

  • When you are out and about, always choose stairs over the elevator, park at the far end of the parking lot when arriving at appointments and meetings, walk down every isle of the grocery store while shopping, practice balancing skills while standing in line, do neck rolls while waiting at a stoplight.
  • When you are at home, do a set of wall pushups while waiting for water to boil, vigorously vacuum, tend to the garden, sweep the sidewalk, rake leaves, lift weights while watching the news, try toe-raises while talking on the phone, do knee bends after sitting for a long period of time.

Says Weber, “you will feel better if you keep active.  Guaranteed!”

ABOUT AMAC

The Association of Mature American Citizens [AMAC] [https://www.amac.us] is a vibrant, vital senior advocacy organization that takes its marching orders from its members.  We act and speak on their behalf, protecting their interests and offering a practical insight on how to best solve the problems they face today.  Live long and make a difference by joining us today at https://amac.us/join-amac.

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Georgia Saville
3 years ago

I really liked this article. I love common sense and this is it. And since my big good husband does most vacuuming, i will point out your vigorous vacuuming suggestion, loved it.

vex
3 years ago

More information provided to me. Thank you for sharing this great article.
vex

Phyllis Poole
3 years ago

I feel bad nutrition is the fault of most physical problems. Good nutrition can keep one well and active. It’s easy to buy prepared food because most are so busy. It would do well to slow down , prepare your own food and keep well and fit

Cindy Turlington
3 years ago

An AMAC Gym membship discount would be a great incentive!

Rick B
3 years ago

Your health plan should have a Silver Sneakers fitness type of program.

Larry S.
3 years ago

Bogus stats! Infant mortality is what brought the average life span down. Plenty of people lived to see 60, 70 and 80. The tragedy was the infants dying at 0, 1 & 2. Their deaths influenced the average life span. Factor all of the abortions into our average life span and see what you get.

Alba
3 years ago

Does there is an AMAC office in Brownsville, TX, and/or Mc Allen – Edinburg TX?
Is there discounts at gyms for AMAC Members? Where ?

The Freezing Senior
3 years ago

All you need is a couple of weight plates (10 & 25 lbs. ) and you can get a great workout any time in the comfort of your home ( indoor or outdoor)
and with minimum space. Hint: get an exercise buddy and play your favorite music – make it fun !
Check out this informative link for all the exercises you can do – and good luck !
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KUDNUYfR1TY&index=10&list=WL&t=0s

Gail
3 years ago

Thank you for the reminders. I have been doing some of the mentioned physical things but alas, I saw some of the things that I should be doing and I was starting to be just plain lazy. Embarrassing and wondering why I wasn’t doing more. Get a grip, I said to myself. Getting a grip makes me smile, now…often.

Bob Villa
3 years ago

I just turned 70 years of age and feel well, physically, mentally & emotionally. Of course I give all the glory and thanks to God, but because I am fairly disciplined to do daily exercises, my well being is enhanced and my ability to cope with the demands of life are better managed. Some of us are not motivated to daily exercise, but your article referring to an exercise “protection” program is relevant to everyone, esp as we age. Find the thing that motivates you to exercise; protection of mind, body and soul is as good a motivator as any. Medications, vitamins, eating well, etc… may all be necessary, but don’t neglect the exercise part. It may help in not needing some meds and doctor visits. TODAY is a good day to start doing the things your article suggests!

Marie Oser
3 years ago

Exercise is VERY important, at any age. At 75 I was going to a gym twice day, climbing 3 flights up and down instead of the elevator, all of a sudden at 80 am having difficulty walking and getting up from a sitting position, being treated w/ prednisone a/c of weak and sore muscles which caused me to fall during my morning walk 2weeks ago, haven’t walked since. Prior to this, I felt great for my age, no aches or pains, had lots of energy, active most of the day, would sit down around 5 or 6 pm to watch the news, in bed by 9 pm. Dr. testing for polymyalgia rheumatica.. Am hoping to hear from anyone that this is not a permanent condition, any recommendations to remedy this? Am not a fan of using drugs. Thankful for any suggestions.

Pete Macinta
3 years ago
Reply to  Marie Oser

I wonder what your vitamin D level might be. That might be a clue.

Sean OMara
3 years ago
Reply to  Marie Oser

Marie: Talk to your doctor about getting off prednisone which is a short term relief with longer last downside. Get to a Physical therapist experienced with seniors and use your motivation to get into a program to regain your former lifestyle, walking and basic mobility. You are only 80 stay positive and active. Eat a healthy diet. Its more about what you dont eat than what you do. Cut out processed foods, eating more whole foods, optimize your sleep and read about the microbiome and how it can be optimized. Keep learning, keep moving, keep improving.

Marie
3 years ago

Exercise is VERY important, at any age. At 75 I was going to a gym twice day, climbing 3 flights up and down instead of the elevator, all of a sudden at 80 am having difficulty walking and getting up from a sitting position, being treated w/ prednisone a/c of weak and sore muscles which caused me to fall during my morning walk 2weeks ago, haven’t walked since. Prior to this, I felt great for my age, no aches or pains, had lots of energy, active most of the day, would sit down around 5 or 6 pm to watch the news, in bed by 9 pm. Dr. testing for polymyalgia rheumatica.. Am hoping to hear from anyone that this is not a permanent condition, any recommendations to remedy this? Am not a fan of using drugs. Thankful for any suggestions.

Eileen
3 years ago
Reply to  Marie

Hello Marie
I just got over polymyalgia rheumatica…thank goodness. It took a bit over one year of prednisone treatment and many blood tests, but it went away. The meds increase your appetite especially for carbs. I gained 10 lbs and I ate very carefully. Still trying to get rid of the weight gain. Its auto-immune and usually Northern European heritage. Good luck hopefully you will be over it soon.
Eileen you can email me if you want to.

Brenda
3 years ago

I go to the gym for aerobic classes 4-5 times a week. Include weights and stretches once a week. Work in my high maintenance yard about 5-15 hours a week. Have lots of joint issues and arthritis. 3 knee repacements and spinal fusion there are 2 choices. To sit and feel sorry for yourself or get moving. I have chosen the latter and feel great (most of the time). I have learned how to limit pain with heat. Been doing this for 21 years now. I am a big believer in staying active and fit

Rik
3 years ago

I find that in my senior years I need to concentrate on the “inside” of my body. Having good/Great blood circulation is the key. The amac censors would frown on naming the product, but I use a PEMT product, that’s Pulse Electro Magnetic Therapy, that gives you 100% microcirculation of the human body’s 75,000 miles of capillaries. This means go EVERY vital organ. Because when the human body doesn’t get blood, oxygen and nutrients to every organ, you’re also not taking away the wastes and toxins that cause diseases. It’s been said that 80% of all diseases that the human body can get are caused by blood circulation. As a male, ED is caused by poor blood circulation, at 71 that’s no longer an issue with me. Look into it folks. AMAC should do a feature article on PEMT devices and how they help the health of your overall body.

Anne Wiser
3 years ago

If you truly believe that a fitness program is beneficial then it should be included in your medigap plans. I cant afford a fitness plan o. $1200 a month income.

Richard Bates
3 years ago
Reply to  Anne Wiser

doing leg raises, wall pushups and a brisk walk dont cost anything. Just saying.

Stephanie Torres
3 years ago
Reply to  Anne Wiser

A fitness plan doesn’t have to be at a gym or take up hours every day, most of us don’t have time, money or ability for that, but we can all keep moving. Walking, an exersise video, doing house work, gardening, volunteering, just keep moving.

Jim
3 years ago
Reply to  Anne Wiser

A good pair of walking shoes and a few times around the block at a vigorous pace doesn’t cost much but yields great results. Start slow and then increase speed or length of walk. It works if you put in the efforts. Internet is great source of info on eating and diets if you can find the right one for you.

Gail
3 years ago
Reply to  Jim

Regarding walks. I walk around the neighborhood not as a ritual, but more for fun. Noticing different stuff about the houses. There are a lot of houses out there. Look at the details; imagine what it’s like to live there…or not. Try letting your imagination go with you on your relaxed walks. They don’t have to be those, “brisk” walks. Let the actual walking part accompany you as you wander about in different neighborhoods.

John
3 years ago
Reply to  Anne Wiser

Anne, please check out Original Strength. We teach people how to restore their movement and improve their balance and focus. It’s all based on the human development system designed into your body at birth.

There are hundreds of free videos which will help you begin. Yes we offer books and other info for sale, but you can do much without spending a dime.

Jessi
3 years ago
Reply to  John

Is “Original Strength” a video on youtube?

Maria Rose
3 years ago
Reply to  Anne Wiser

The only thing those high priced membership offer is access to those weight machines and treadmills and stationary bikes that most people don’t have in their homes. Like most people have commented a simple walk around your neighborhood is a good start. If you need to have company to do this, try asking a friend to come with you. This costs nothing but your time.

Rick B
3 years ago
Reply to  Anne Wiser

Your health plan should have a Silver Sneakers fitness type program.

Jessi
3 years ago
Reply to  Anne Wiser

I found a nice, inexpensive bike on OfferUp.

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