Aerobic exercise can help to improve the physical and mental health of a man over 70.
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A good cardio program at any age has virtually no downside and not only does wonders for a person's heart health, but almost every other aspect of their well-being, including their mental health. For men who are approaching 70, or who are already well ensconced in their septuagenarian years, adding some cardio exercises can improve both quality and quantity of life, making it a win-win that's hard to beat.
Don't Ignore the Numbers
Scare tactics are never a great way to motivate someone to do something, but when it comes to heart health, the numbers simply can't be ignored. Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States and accounts for one in every three deaths. And no one is immune as the numbers are spread fairly evenly between the genders
The good news is that heart disease is also one of the most preventable medical conditions. The leading causes of cardiovascular disease include physical inactivity, weight issues, diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure, all of which can be improved with a little daily exercise.
Hit the Daily Recommendations
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has set forth some very realistic exercise recommendations for the older population that will help ward off a host of medical issues. The CDC breaks down their recommendations into two categories: aerobic activity and muscle strengthening. When it comes to your cardio health, you should engage in moderate aerobic exercise for at least 150 minutes each week, or 75 minutes of vigorous , high-intensity exercise.
Get Up and Moving
Before you get bogged down in figuring out what constitutes "moderate" or "vigorous," the first step is to simply get moving. Walking with a friend for 30 minutes is a great way to start. If you agree to meet up just five times a week, you'll cover your two hours and 30 minutes quite enjoyably.
If you once ruled the tennis courts, think about picking the racquet back up again for some more vigorous heart-healthy exercises. Or if golf is more your speed, maybe opt to walk between holes to get in a little cardio workout.
For men who have joint problems due to arthritis, swimming offers a great cardio workout without the joint pounding that comes with walking or running. You might also dust off your bicycle for an easy ride through the neighborhood or hop on a cycling machine at the gym.
Find Some Motivation
One of the best ways for men over the age of 70 to get in some good cardio is to enlist a group of similarly-aged friends. Having company is a wonderful motivator, and it's also great for your mental health to stay connected with the world around you. You and a friend might even try something new, like pilates or a Zumba class to get your heart pumping.
If you want to break out of your age group, and you've got children or grandchildren, spending some time with them engaged in physical exercise keeps your family ties closely knit and your cardiovascular health in tune.