Regular physical activity is a critical component of a heart-healthy lifestyle. While many people choose to exercise at the gym or outside, you can also get your blood flowing in the comfort of your own home. Here are some easy ways to get started with a regular exercise routine at home.
Any kind of dance will do. Turn on your favorite music and move or dance for 20-30 minutes. You’ll be exercising without even realizing it!
Move in Place.
There are many strengthening exercises that can be done using only your body weight for resistance. For example, assisted squats against a wall, abdominal exercises, leg lifts, and arm raises.
If you live in a house with a flight of stairs, use them! Try walking up and down the stairs ten times a day. Take a break, then start again. If you live in a multi-story apartment building, take advantage of the stairwells that few people use to do a similar routine. If you can’t find steps anywhere, you can use a stool as a single step to go up and down. Start easy—just a few minutes at first—and work your way up to more steps.
Yoga and pilates.
These types of exercise help stretch and strengthen your whole body with little impact on the joints.
Before beginning any exercise routine, it is important to consult with your doctor or cardiologist about any exercise limitations you might have. Once you’ve done that, think about your fitness goals and create a schedule for yourself that helps you work towards those goals. Remember to start easily and progress slowly over time, allowing your body to adjust to the extra effort.
The American Heart Association and the Centers for Disease Control have useful guidelines for older adults getting started on their exercise routine. What are you waiting for? Your health depends on it!
- Learn about Your Heart While Walking
- Learn how Staying Active Contributes to Heart Health and Brain Health, Even at 70
- Learn how Exercise Eliminates the Harmful Effects of Sitting
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