InSITE--Senior Shape Up

What do you do to keep in shape? Some folks run for miles, others spend hours at the gym, but what if you're older, and out of practice? I found a shape up suggestion for senior citizens, and actually anyone who wants to start out slowly, and safely.

You judge yourself. And this web site gives you what you need to know to get started. It's actually from NASA, the space people, and the National Institute on Aging, so they know their stuff. But let me warn you, just like all the workout shows do, check with your doctor before you start any exercise program. You have to know what's right for you.

That said, start with that senior citizen- space connection. Senator and senior John Glenn, the former astronaut, writes the forward to the site. He's a fit guy, and even he's had to alter his routines to stay healthy. This site is actually a book on shaping up, so there's a table of contents to browse, click through it so you know what you're getting into.

Don't miss this page. It talks about the reasons we don't exercise. It's talking to seniors, but it sounds true for just about any of us. Time, expense, even pride. But it also talks about the benefits. Like being inactive, out of shape is the background killer for more deaths in the country than everything except smoking. So those extra pounds and time on the sofa is killing you.

Now, just to be sure, look at the list of checkpoints before you start that exercise routine. It's actually pretty simple, and is things you should probably check with your doctor about whether or not you're starting an exercise program. Give it a look.

So you're ready to start. On your own or with a pal. You don't have to go to the gym, if you were willing and able to do that, you wouldn't be here. So start at home. All that money you can spend on a personal trainer? Start here with their charts of the kinds of exercises you should do. Notice, they think you should do something, every day.

Sound hard? it could be, but how hard depends on you. They have some suggestions, and it really does depend on the kind of shape you're already in. A nice, simple way of checking your fitness level, and what you're capable of. Not that muscle head on TV. If it's too hard, slow down and build up to it. Know your limits to stay healthy while you're getting healthy.

Let's get to the meat of the message here, going back to the table of contents, they have a list of exercises, broken down by strength, balance, stretching, you get the idea. The exercises are illustrated, so you can see what you should be doing. And it's pretty simple, basic stuff. Something for your arms. Here's the first one you should do... Get up off that chair and exercise! Seriously, they seem simple, but start repeating the motions, and you will get in better shape than you have been, just sitting there.

You can't do a few exercises and eat the whole ice cream section, so there are tips on nutrition. A couple things I really appreciate, a form you can either print out or keep on line with a schedule to remind you of what you're going to do to shape up, and another to keep track of your progress. These are very important, since they give you goals to start with, and proof you're doing something to get and stay healthy.