Fitness is important for people of all ages, but it becomes more important the more you age. Exercise keeps your mind and body healthy and can prevent injuries and slow symptoms of aging.

Deciding to get in shape is probably the most important step in getting fit, but it’s doesn’t stop there. Many people lose their way because they just don’t know how to get started. Perhaps you’ve never really tried to get in shape, or you have but you’ve strayed away. Here are some tips on how to get on track, no matter your age.

The Doctor

You often ignore it, but if you’ve been looking into getting fit, you’ve probably seen and heard the same message over and over: consult your doctor before starting a diet and exercise program. While this message is important for everyone, it’s even more vital as you age. We’ve all heard of seniors who run marathons and climb mountains, but just because their body is built for it doesn’t mean yours is.

By starting a fitness program without seeing your doctor, you could be putting your health in serious danger. If your doctor does find a problem, they can help you take steps to reduce your risk and give you advice for getting fit in a safe manner.

The Gym

Gyms are always a great place to get started getting fit. While many gyms have been geared towards younger people with a high fitness level, a lot of places are starting to catch on and are marketing towards baby boomers. They are offering classes, programs, and equipment designed for people who have less mobility or are beginners. Many gyms also offer a start-up program to help people who haven’t been to a gym in a while get going. They can recommend exercises and programs designed just for you.

Fitness Clubs

If the gym isn’t for you, why not try a walking or other fitness club. You can get a workout, get social support, and you can often get fringe benefits including health check-ups or discounts. You can usually find a walking club with your local mall, which offers the benefit of being climate controlled, and is safer than walking in the open on streets.

Your Friends

One of the biggest factors in determining whether or not you’ll stick with a workout plan is whether or not you have a back-up system to keep you motivated. If you have friends who work out or participate in physical activities, ask if you can join them. Usually they’re very excited to have someone else interested in what they do and will be happy to help you out. If your friends aren’t really active, try to convince them to get started with you. You can research your options together and you won’t feel so out of place when someone else is with you.

Remember, the most important part of an exercise program is to have fun. That way you’ll stick with it and reap the full benefits for a long time.

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