Last night, I was talking to a 52-year-old man who didn’t look a day over 40. He had bright, wide eyes, a slender physique, and was a self-reported avid cyclist. I only had a few moments to talk to the man—he was my taxi driver—but you could tell that his mentality was that age didn’t matter.
He got me thinking about how passion and common sense make up the fountain of youth. Things don’t change that much as you age: the things that were good for you in the past are still good for you now, and will continue to be in the future.
But that can be a hard concept for some. It’s been ingrained in many of us that life is limited in old age. I believe it’s a perspective unique to North America, where there isn’t the same kind of respect shown to older generations as there is in other countries. Our elderly population simply isn’t celebrated as they should be and it might have altered your mentality. But you can get back on track with these easy health tips that can improve your life as you age:
Staying Young as You Age
Tip #1: Stand Up and Sit Down
Yep, that’s a real part of staying strong and flexible as you age; it’s also called a squat. Simply go to an ottoman or stool in your home and stand just in front of it with your feet about shoulder-width apart. Straighten your arms out in front of you for balance, and with your back straight, begin to bend your knees and bring your hips back, keeping your core tight until your butt touches the surface. When it does, contract your leg muscles by pushing your heels into the ground until you’re standing. Repeat the movement 10 times, take a rest, and do it again! This movement will promote strength and balance. It’s also important to make sure you keep your knees lined up with your toes.
Tip #2: Set Goals
If you look at the things you’ve accomplished in life, there is certainly one thing that is constant: you set and achieved goals. Now you might not have hit them all, but that’s normal; no one does. Goals keep people motivated, working hard, and spur action. If you want to age well, keep your mind and body engaged by finding something to work towards. The taxi driver I mentioned above, he stays motivated by working on music in his free time.
Tip #3: Don’t Let Your Birthday Define You
If you want to start a new hobby, do it. Every day there are countless “older individuals” getting involved in things you might consider yourself “too old” for. Fitness classes, cycling groups, art classes, cooking classes, yoga, Pilates, and numerous other activities are now aimed at this underserved and often unacknowledged segment of the population.
Take your life back, because you’ve earned it. There are more options than ever before to help you do the things you’ve always wanted to do, and they can all help promote youthful longevity.
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