Seniors Staying Active
Senior’s are not what they used to be! The stereotypical senior citizen, knitting or staying at home waiting for younger family members to visit is a thing of the past. As baby boomers hit their retiring years, they are paving the way for a new age of retirement, staying active and continuing to experience life to its fullest. This is an attitude that is reshaping what is so lightly known as the golden years.
Why stop dreaming your dreams at sixty? My aunt began to take drum lessons at sixty and now plays AC-DC better then anyone! Many running clubs are no strangers to people over 60; many times you will see the seniors leading the pack of runners on a 10k hike!
Sixty is a milestone, you are old enough to be confident in yourself and your decisions, yet you are still young enough to bask in the enjoyment of your successes. Sixty is not a time to slow down, it is the age to accomplish life long hopes and dreams, and importantly, to stay active with a great diet and exercise to train your body to continue its health well into your golden years.
The baby boomers are paving the way for all of us that trying new things and proving that your passion for learning does not end after you graduate high school or college. You still have the chance of winning the big baseball game, playing a beautiful piece at a recital, trying ballet, or mastering the artistic movements of tai chi. You do not have to be an ex Olympic champion to join many of these sports, a lot of them start as beginners or just people wanting to have a good time! Expect to make new friends and have a lot of laughs in your new adventure. The world is your oyster baby boomers, so where do you start?
There are many groups in both urban and suburban areas for those over 60 who are interested in a wide range of activities. I met a young man, Andy, who told me that he and his girlfriend Heather were invited on a 4 hour hike and canoe in Fergus, Ontario, Canada with a Seniors group who gets together to try new sports. Andy and his girlfriend were amazed at the 60 and 70 something’s who were hiking some hard trails and canoeing down sometimes harsh rapids with great ease. Andy and Heather walked away from that day with some new friendships, and it was apparent that enjoying yourself through sport does not have to end in your forties. (Above is a picture of Andy, Heather, Heather’s father Jim and their new group of friends).
If fitness is your goal, and you fear you are over weight and need practice, something as simple as nightly walks is your key to a new you. Walking is an excellent form of cardio, and will wake up your metabolism to embark on the journey of a healthier you. Going to your local library and taking out healthy style cook books will open up your family to a plethora of palate loving dishes. For those seniors who may not be in the shape they want, but would like to see a change, try Tai Chi. In time, you will not only free your mind, but start to see yourself in a better physical and emotional outlook.
Seniors are not only staying active physically, but also keeping their minds sharp emotionally. Near by community colleges or universities are seeing a flux of senior enrollment. From a beginners mechanic course at a high school to a college philosophy 101 class, expanding your mind and body does not stop in your 20s. I remember being in University and appreciating the seniors in the class, they brought a much more broad scope to class discussions, and it certainly helped on my essays!
If you are one who is always helping others, volunteer! From driving cancer patients to their destinations to reading to new comers to your country at the library, this will give you the fulfillment you are looking for and it will open you up to new friendships and life experiences.
Finally, if you are one who has always had a taste for travel, now is the time to book! With prices low and the internet with a diamond mine of information, its time to embark on your dream destination. Climb that Eiffel tower (the view is breath taking) or see the pyramids of Egypt, now is the time.
Going into your golden years has become a much friendlier experience for seniors. Keeping your mind and body healthy will make your 50 plus years the best of your life. Now is the time to get the jump start you need. Remember, today is the first day of the rest of your life!