While I was in the middle of my workout today I was taken back a little by how challenging it felt, and the first thing I thought was gheeze I’m not in my 50’s anymore! Ha! I got through it just fine, but it was challenging and I had to push myself to continue. Which made me think that maybe it’s time to slow down and not expect so much out of myself, and as soon as that thought entered my head I gave it a swift powerful sidekick out the door! That is a slippery slope I don’t care to go down because it’s so darn easy to back off and slow down!
So what if my workout is a little ambitious, and seriously it is within reason, it’s okay. In order to stay strong and active in our lives we have to continually challenge ourselves, but we know there is a fine line between challenging ourselves and overdoing it. The goal is to have the health benefits of our exercise routine outweigh the risks, not the other way around. We don’t want to overdo it, especially as we age, but we have to make sure we’re doing enough to challenge ourselves so we receive those health benefits. The key is to listen to your body and be aware of little changes that may be happening that could signal that you’re overdoing it, like not sleeping well, or excessive soreness, or maybe some irritability. I know for me personally my body goes through uncomfortable changes when I don’t exercise regularly, I feel lethargic or my body aches and feels stiff. A challenging exercise routine, within reason (which by the way will look different for each of us because exercise is a journey, and we each have a unique fitness level), will help us stay engaged in our lives and may very well be our fountain of youth.
So what’s the take away? Don’t let a demanding exercise routine, whatever that is for you, intimidate you into slowing down or backing off. And I know as we age things do get harder, but we just need to simply do the best we can during each workout (which as we know, some days will be better than others), and just keep moving forward, because every single day we have a new opportunity to prioritize our health and wellness and embrace the positives that are given to us through a challenging but attainable exercise routine.
Useful practical information and a workout or two...