Am I too old to exercise?

You are never too old to exercise. Exercise imparts life to your years! It will not only keep you in condition, but you will feel better and enjoy life more. As well as the numerous benefits mentioned above, by keeping you conditioned, exercise will help you stay more independent.

What kind of exercise is advisable?

The best kind of exercise is the kind you enjoy and will do every day. Variety is not only the spice of life, but of exercise as well. Go for a nature hike, swim, golf, play tennis, lift weights, utilize exercise machines, walk - outdoors with your dog or inside a shopping mall with your acquaintances, ride a bicycle (good for your balance as well as your muscles), practice dancing, yoga or tai chi just to identify a few - the choice is yours. Exercising with friends can make it intimate and even more fun.

How frequently do I need to exercise and for how long?

Some exercise every day should be your goal. Since all exercise adds up, you can even do a few more modest exercises instead of one big one. For instance, 10 minutes in the morning, at lunchtime and in the evening still give you thirty minutes of exercise, even though split up.

One suggestion is to walk 10,000 steps every day. If you find this difficult to do, start off with as much exercise as you can, then add on a few more steps or a few more minutes every few days until you reach your goal. You should try some exercise that gets your heart pumping at least one time a day, but this doesn't have to be overly physical activity. Try walking a little faster than usual or taking the stairs instead of the elevator.

I have tried to exercise before, but invariably got bored. How can I avoid this?

Make a goal. Perhaps a vacation to look forward to - regular exercise can give you the staying power and mental calm to really savour your time off.

Find something you enjoy. Try dance, swimming, or bicycling. Having a variety of exercise choices helps preclude boredom.

Try to meet with friends. Make your everyday exercise a social and fun event. Make new friends, cheer each other on, and you will depart the session feeling good physically and mentally.

When you find you have more energy and are sleeping better, you'll want to carry on.

Is housework and gardening regarded exercise?

Yes, it is gentle exercise but nevertheless counts. Moving about, digging, stretching and bending, reaching up to dust in high points all give a small but significant benefit, and it all adds up.

I am in a wheel chair. How can I exercise?

"Exercise is for everybody!" This is the slogan of the National Center on Physical Activity and Disability, and they have many beneficial exercises and suggestions for physical fitness for individuals in wheelchairs. Going through a diversity of exercises daily bestows the benefits delineated above, and there are books, articles, videos, and DVDs available to help.

I have arthritis in my joints and it hurts to exercise. What can I do?

Swimming or water aerobic exercises in a heated pool are effective ways to begin exercising if you have arthritis. As your muscular tissues get stronger, you might even find your joint pains alleviating because strong muscles protect joints. If you have intense pain in your joints, or they are hot to touch, red or swelled, check with your health care provider before beginning any exercise program.

I am taking various medicines. Is it all right for me to exercise?

Ask your health care provider this inquiry before beginning an exercise plan, particularly if you are taking any kind of heart or blood pressure medicine.

Remember: If you get shortness of breath, dizziness, cold or clammy skin, nausea, or chest pains while exercising, stop exercising right away and contact your health care provider.

It is too hot/cold outside to exercise, how can I do it?

One idea is mall walking, which has become frequent in many places. Groups of seniors gather at standard time intervals, mall walk, then have a coffee or soft drink together afterward. Some long-term friendships have come out of this.

Most YMCAs have exercise programmes and well-equipped exercise rooms. Many have special courses and rates for seniors, and they are air-conditioned/heated.

Many senior centers likewise have exercise programs for seniors, and the exercise plus assembling and talking with others can raise the spirits. There also are numerous videotapes and audiotapes that direct exercise procedures that can be used in your own home.

My neighborhood is unsafe to go out walking alone - what can I do?

Mall walk, go to the YMCA or a senior center. If transportation is an issue, see if you can link up with others in a similar position. Many seniors get together and arrange for a taxicab or van to pick them up two or more days a week, drop them off, then return them home after the outing. If several people divvy up the cost, it can be modest. You can likewise ask your local Area Agency on Aging and the nearest Senior Center if there is any free or small cost transport accessible in your area.




“Under the care of Leo J. Borrell, M.D. since December 2001, I have seen a remarkable improvement in my mother’s condition. She is responding dramatically to the new regiment Dr. Borrell has prescribed”

- Beth Rose


Feb 3, 2008

The Interdisciplinary Team; The Role of the Psychiatrist

by Dr. Leo J. Borrell, featured in Assisted Living Consult for November/December 2006. A HealthCom Media Publication