We all know the truth. We’ve heard it hundreds of times: some form of daily or almost daily exercise after 60 will keep both your body and your mind happy.
I used to detest lifting weights. I thought it was boring, pointless, and, well, hard. I’d much rather run or do yoga or go surfing. Then, last year, my son Chris, a fitness expert and record-holding powerlifter, asked me if I’d like to compete in a local deadlift competition.
It’s easy to think of your body as being completely separate from your brain. After all, your emotions and thoughts feel very different than the sensations in your body.
The reality is that your body and brain are intimately connected – and this has serious implications for dealing with stress and anxiety. This is one of the many reasons that exercise over 60 is so important.
Last year, at age 61, I held a plank for 7 minutes. Now, setting personal records for holding planks may not be a priority for most women in their 60s, but I like a good challenge!
Nordic pole walking originated in Finland in the early 20th century as a summer training exercise for cross country skiers.
According to Men’s Fitness magazine, “A 200-pound guy who can deadlift 300 pounds for one rep is pretty strong.”
I wonder what they would say about a 78-year-old grandma who can deadlift 228 pounds. Maybe it’s time that they met Shirley Webb, a wonderful person who is inspiring women all over the world to get off the couch and into the gym.
Exercising at home sounds like the perfect way to get in shape. No driving to a sweaty workout facility filled with Spandex-clad people taking selfies in front of mirrors, gossiping about the new hot Zumba instructor.
Or maybe that’s just my gym. Regardless, home workouts can be ideal. Or not good.
Not everyone has the same fitness level, nor the same fitness goals.
I have never considered myself an athlete. In a particular low time in my life when I was 58, I started Masters Rowing which led to a level of fitness I had never even dreamed of.
I have always been an active person – I love tennis, yoga, walking and biking. But then the age-related injuries and aches and pains made themselves manifest in my body. Tennis was over and, suddenly, I found myself crying in yoga class. “Hey!” I said to myself. “Yoga’s not supposed to make you cry!”