Whatever your age, being physically active helps you reduce risk for several cancers, type-2 diabetes and heart disease. It's never too late to get started or to get back into exercising; in fact staying strong and limber becomes even more important with aging. In addition to helping ward off chronic diseases, moving more:
For cancer prevention AICR recommends beig modertately active at least 30 minutes every day. US government guidelines say adults - including those over 65 - should also do muscle-strengthening exercises at least two days a week to boost balance and strength.
If you are not quite there, now is the perfect time to up your game.
Boost your heart rate:
If you aren't active, start with simple activities like walking or riding a bicycle to get your heart beating a little faster. Gradually build up your minutes of activity. For example walk for 5-10 minutes today and add a minute or two every day - or every week - depending on your fitness level, to ease into longer activity periods
Once you’ve built up your endurance, meet your 30-plus minutes of activity by doing it all at one time or doing small chunks more often. For example, do ten minutes of heart-pumping activity like brisk walking at least three times during the day, or head to a gym or for a long (30 minutes or more) swim or dance class every day.
If you're at risk for falling, try trekking poles or other walking sticks to improve your stability and balance. Adding activity can improve your quality of life if you have diabetes, heart disease or arthritis. If you have concerns, discuss appropriate activities with your health care provider.
Strategies to get started:
Strength building activities:
Strengthen your muscles and bone with resistance and/or weight training at least two days a week. The following ideas can help you include all six major muscle groups safely:
The National Center on Physical Activity and Disability has articles, factsheets and videos to help people with disability get active in creative ways.