July 7, 2011

Seven Summer Fitness Tips

As I check and recheck my calendar and see that indeed it is July and there is probably not a very good chance of having yet another blizzard /snowstorm on the horizon, the thoughts of fitness outdoors seems like a very good idea!  Nice weather, birds singing, sun shining, no heavy winter coats, gives one such a feeling of freedom and being alive!!  However, there are some tips and suggestions for seniors to adhere to prior to taking their fitness regiment outdoors or starting a new fitness program at this time of year.
Summer months are indeed fabulous to be outdoors exercising at any age but there are some extra tips and precautions that seniors need to take before venturing out into the wild outdoors.
The following are some valuable suggestions that will help to ensure a safe, happy and energizing workout during the summer months.
Always consult your physician before starting a fitness program.

  1. Continue to eat healthy!  When the weather gets hot, eating naturally decreases and for any fitness buffs, the body needs the energy to be able to do the workout that is required.  Keeping your intake of food as normal as you can is the right way to accomplish this!
  2. Wear clothes that breathe… natural cotton or fitness wear that helps keep skin dry and comfy are the best options.  Loose fitting capris or shorts and cotton tee shirts or tank tops are good ideas when exercising in the warmer months.  Don’t overdress and always dress for the weather.  Also, a fine looking hat that keeps the sun off your head and face is always in fashion for fitness!
  3. Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate!  Hydration is important at every time of the year but holds more importance as the days grow warmer.  We lose moisture from our bodies through increased sweating and sometimes by just being active in the heat – you must keep your body hydrated with water throughout the day.  Water is best since caffeinated beverages and fruit juices can interfere with hydration, medical conditions and/or medications.
  4. Exercise at certain times of the day if the weather proves too warm during “peak” hours.  Try to get walking or any cardio program done early in the morning or later in the evening when the sun is not at its highest point and the climate cools down a bit.
  5. If you are planning on walking in a park or recreational area, make sure there is some shade (trees, cabana or gazebo) and benches/chairs that will allow you to rest when you need to as you do your exercises.
  6. If you can’t exercise outside due to the conditions of the weather – join a fitness class in any of the local facilities that offer senior fitness classes.  Cooler temperatures indoors (air conditioning and fans) will help to keep participants comfortable as they go through their workout.  Be sure the facility has a certified senior fitness professional conducting the class, and don’t hesitate  to ask them for a copy of the certification!
  7. If you don’t live near any facility that has classes, use your food shopping or mall time to get in some walking!  Most (if not all) stores do have air-conditioning at this time of year and going up and down the aisles (even if you don’t have to buy anything) is a great way to get in extra steps into your routine and be cool at the same time!

That should help guide you towards summer fitness goals!  This is a short time of year in our area of the country and everyone needs to get out in it and enjoy!  Good physical fitness allows seniors to enjoy to their upmost this wonderful time of year and incorporating the program into the outdoors is a great idea as long as you are careful, plan ahead and make sure you have correct information and then just enjoy!