The Power of Knowing Why:
What’s Your Main Motivation for Fitness?
If you want to get fit or stay
fit after 50, you need a good motivator — a primary reason why you want
to exercise, eat right, and live a healthy lifestyle.
We talk to people about this all the time. Active adults have powerful, compelling reasons why they lift weights, run, swim, take yoga, ride their bikes, and more. Here are just a few most often cited:
- Playing with grandchildren
- Reducing medication
- Sports and hobbies
- Avoiding obesity, hypertension and falls
- Social interaction
- Better recovery from surgeries
- Treatment of chronic conditions like Parkinson’s, diabetes and more
Do any of those strike a chord
Any reason is a good reason. Heck, you don’t even have to have one. But many people like to remind themselves of their primary driver. It can give you a boost when you’re not feeling motivated. And it can guide your choices about how to spend your time and energy.
Here are some real-life motivators from people over 50, 60 or 70 from around the US and Canada.
Paul started working
out eight years ago just for something to do. “And then I discovered something:
It makes me feel good!” Paul lifts weights three times a week.
Donna loves to hike in the Rocky Mountains. She wasn’t about to let neuropathy stop her. Working with a trainer keeps her out on the trails. “I had to do something,” she says. “I wasn’t going to stop walking.”
Roy says, “I want to be able to play golf till the last day I’m breathing.”
Brenda: “I want to die young at a ripe old age. My mother lived to 99, and after watching someone grow old, I want to do it as youthfully as possible.”
When arthritis made gardening too hard, Amanda found help at a local gym. She lost 70 pounds, started walking every night, and quickly returned to her cherished garden. “I find it meditative, and I can leave all my worries behind me.”
Being fit helped Shebah before, during and after hip replacement. “You have to take what life gives you and make it work and adjust.”
Jimmy has been running and working out since 1979 and says it helps with stress. “It slows you down mentally. You have to focus on the moment, not what you need to do later.”
Julie: “I want to be an active grandparent. I want to get on the floor and pick her up and swim and do all those things. I don’t want to miss a thing.”
Lora, above, suffered a stroke in 2010 and now
works out at least three times a week. “I’m living healthy and spiritually
wealthy so I can laugh, love and live,” she says.
Kay has always loved to travel and knows she has to stay fit to keep doing it now. “If I didn’t exercise regularly, I wouldn’t be able to do everything you have to do when you’re traveling – just climbing stairs, running through the airport, carrying bags and all that stuff.”
“That’s why I keep this up,” she says about exercising. “Because I want to keep going where I want to go and doing what I want to do.”
That’s a wide, wonderful “why” to close this. So, come talk with us about your goals. We’re here to help you reach them, whatever your “why” might be.
5 Fun Facts about the Burpee
Whether you love them, hate them,
or don’t ever want to try them, you might be surprised to know that burpees
were actually invented by a person – and his name was, yes, Burpee.
Royal Burpee, to be precise. He was an exercise physiologist and early bodybuilder. His 122nd birthday on June 4 is a good reason to look at these Five Fun Facts about the now ubiquitous if not quite beloved exercise.
- Burpee created his move in the late 1930s while studying for his Ph.D. at Columbia University.
- He intended it as a fitness test, not an exercise.
- He did not include the pushup and the jump. Those were added later. The original consisted of squatting down and placing both hands on the floor; jumping feet back into a plank; jumping feet forward; returning to standing position.
- His granddaughter said he “would be rolling over in his grave if he saw the way it’s being done in a lot of places” today.
- Of course, nobody has to do burpees, which can be hard on the knees and back and easily performed improperly. But when done correctly, they can be effective, particularly at raising the heart rate. Planks and jump squats are good alternatives.
Regardless of whether you want to do as many as possible, or never do your first, burpees are a good conversation starter with anyone getting or staying fit.
We’re happy to show you proper
form, other exercises, and more ways to gain all the benefits of this “love it
or hate it” move.
Sources: Business Insider, The Huffington Post