Can You Guess Which Exercise Is Best For Anyone, No Matter How Old You Are?
Turns out that this type of exercise gives the best work out for anybody at any age. Who would have thought that one exercise would cover it for everyone!
And the winner is… Running in moderation gives the best results for health across all age groups. And as you age, you want to make sure that you’re getting the right amount of exercise to stay healthy. In this article and video, Barbara Hannah Grufferman gives some guidelines on how to start running for the older crowd.
We agree with this, that running is a better form of exercise than walking, because it is a more natural form of movement for us humans. We have evolved as and are built for long-distance running, which is a graceful and natural form of movement for us.
Once you learn to run properly you will be able to move well without injuring yourself and with less pressure on your joints. One of the things she mentions in the video is to keep the body low using a shuffle movement. To explain this better we recommend something called Groucho running/walking. This keeps the body’s center of gravity low, grounds your gait and eases the pressure on the joints.
Another point to mention is that when you alternate between walking and running as she suggests, keep your running form when you switch to walking. As you slow down for the walk, walk with the same body form as you had when you were running. Again, this will ease the pressure on your joints, because regular walking or jogging can give your joints a real pounding.
What’s the best work out for people of all ages?
According to a recent study, it’s this: running.
Researchers, who followed participants over a 30-year period, were amazed to discover that those who ran in moderation showed the greatest health gains and benefits when compared to those who ran faster and more often. The ‘sweet spot’, it seems, is running about 3 – 4 times a week at a slower pace, proving that the “less is more” philosophy really applies to exercise.
That’s good news for me because a few years ago–just around the time I was turning 50 and trying to come to grips with the changes my body, mind and life were going through—I decided to try running, against my better judgment. Even my husband and daughters raised their eyebrows (one actually rolled her eyes, but I’m not naming names).
I knew I had to do something to get my health, weight and stress level back on track. But run? Even I questioned the good sense of this since I’d never never willingly run in my life, except during the dreaded annual Field Day at P.S. 203 in Brooklyn, or when chasing down the Good Humor truck. More importantly, the slow but steady weight gain and loss of energy were wreaking havoc with my health. Not good.
Luckily I learned how to run safely (without hurting my knees!) by following a program created by Jeff Galloway, the Olympian and marathoner who developed the Run-Walk-Run plan used by hundreds of thousands around the world. It’s the best way for people of all ages–especially those of us over 50–to get out there and move our bodies.
Take a look at this quick video–Running After 50:
Like many people over 50, I was worried because I thought running, or even strenuous walking, can hurt our joints. Research shows, however, that it won’t if done right. After 30 years of following his own program, Jeff has never had an injury. The reason is simple: it calls for slow, gentle running, with scheduled walk breaks, just like I demonstrated in the video. Distance, not speed, is the goal. It’s easy on the joints, yet gives a high performance cardio work out, and helps build muscle mass in our legs and hips, which is crucial in the battle against osteoporosis.
I’ve been running for the last few years, and it’s helped me lose–and keep off –15 lbs and improve my overall health and well being. Running may not be for everyone, but if you’re thinking about it, check with your doctor first.