4 Ways to Make Exercise Fun and Get Healthy in Retirement
If you are concerned about your health as you approach retirement, you are definitely not alone. According to a Merill Lynch Retirement Study, 81% of respondents reported that health is one of the most important ingredients for a happy retirement.
Sure, an excellent way to take charge of your health is to exercise, but sometimes the last thing you want to do is set foot on the treadmill or in the gym. Exercise doesn’t seem like much fun…
Which is why you need to make it fun! This is my recommendation: instead of grudgingly conjuring up the will power to do exercises you hate, instead of dragging your feet to the gym, muttering the adage “it’s good for me”, why not craft a regiment that you actually look forward to each and every day?
Don’t believe it’s possible? Here are 5 ideas that might change your mind!
1. Tie Exercise to a Goal—and Not a Goal Weight Either
And for you older men out there, I am not referring to your blood pressure or cholesterol settling in on the magic numbers either. No, I’m talking about a life goal. Instead of making exercise merely about getting healthy, make it about accomplishing something you’ve always wanted to accomplish. For instance, have you ever wanted to…
- Hike in all 59 National Parks?
- Take a week to bike across your state?
- Finally clean out that attic or shed?
You can even sign up for a Relay for Life or another exercise-related fundraiser to help a good cause reach their goals!
Whether it gives you a sense of personal satisfaction, curbs your appetite for adventure, or helps someone in need, don’t make your goal about how many calories you’re burning; make it about the life you’re leading!
2. Join The Right Crowd…
Unlike most high school peer pressure, peer pressure as you age can be a wonderful encouragement. And it can certainly help you keep active. Think sports leagues. Think hiking groups. Think dance classes. Check online or at a fitness center near you. And if you can’t find one, take a lesson from Jake Chesson, and start one! Being a part of a group will help you stay consistent in your exercise routine, of course. But as you develop friendships and a community, I bet you’ll find yourself enjoying it as well!
3. …Or Just The Right Person
Don’t like crowds? Then use your exercise time to reconnect with just one person you love. Take your spouse out for a long walk by the lake or—if you are lucky enough to live near one—the beach. Exercise with your sister or your brother or a friend you haven’t seen in ages. You can even choose to play a game with a grandkid like kickball, tag, or even old school hopscotch. The Lord knows it takes a lot of energy to keep up with them!
4. Incorporate Exercise into a Hobby!
Do you have a knack for building things? Then stop by Lowe’s and get started! Have you ever tried golf? Why not try 9 holes without a golf cart? Want fresh fruits and vegetables to complement your healthy lifestyle of exercising? Work up a sweat while planting a garden.
The point is you shouldn’t make exercise about exercise. Instead, you should infuse physical activity into your lifestyle, your goals, your hobbies, and the people you love most. It may take a bit of thought and creativity to find physical activities that you are passionate about intrinsically, but once you find them, exercise will cease to be drudgery. Your exercise will make your heart thump in more ways than one.
Turning 65 soon and not sure what to do? Click here to sign up for our free Medicare workshop. No high-pressure sales pitches here, just in-depth discussion about the ins and outs of Medicare!