Older Adults Can Run

3 min read

The fact that you aren’t young anymore doesn’t mean that you can’t start running. Maybe it has been years since you have run, or maybe you have never run at all. That’s okay; it isn’t too late to start.

Don’t be nervous about starting to run now. You certainly don’t have to run a marathon next week – or ever, for that matter. It’s perfectly alright to start out small and build slowly.

It’s always a good idea to talk to your doctor before you start a new exercise programme. Get a checkup, and as soon as you get the all-clear from your doctor, you can hit the pavement.

Start Slowly

While it’s good to be ambitious, it is wise to start your running programme slowly so that you don’t end up with an injury. Start out by walking. Slowly increase your distance and your speed. Walking instead of running is not wasted time.

Even a leisurely walk is good for your body. It builds stronger bones and fights osteoporosis. As you gradually build up your speed and distance, your heart and lungs will develop to give you the strength that you need.

Walking regularly helps to reduce your blood pressure and your cholesterol and can reduce your need for medication. Ultimately, regular exercise – even walking – can reduce the risk of having a stroke or heart attack.

Get a Partner

It’s easy to put off exercise if you aren’t being held accountable to someone. If you plan to start running, find a friend who will do it with you.

When a friend is counting on you, you are more likely to actually follow through on your plan to run. It will be more fun, too. Having a friend along for your run provides a measure of safety, as well, particularly for older adults.

If you experience a fall or an injury, you will have someone with you to get help. If you do choose to run alone, be sure to carry a mobile phone in case of a problem. You might also want to listen to music to entertain you and keep you moving.

Remember, you don’t have to run fast or long distances in order for running to be beneficial. Doing something is better than doing nothing.

Benefits of Running

As we mentioned before, running and walking provide a host of physical benefits, from reducing blood pressure and cholesterol to combating osteoporosis. Running also improves your mental health.

It reduces the occurrence of depression and even helps to prevent cognitive decline. Running also helps you sleep better. People who run on a regular basis tend to sleep more deeply and soundly and wake feeling refreshed.

Running helps to improve your balance and mobility, as well. Too many older adults avoid exercise because they fear an injury. However, leading an active lifestyle makes your body stronger and improves your balance, which actually helps to prevent injuries. Continuing to be active as you age helps you to retain your mobility and independence.

Getting Started

Start simply by walking ten minutes a day. As it begins to feel easier, slowly increase your time to 15 or 20 minutes. Walking or running every day is great, but if that is not a possibility, try for three times per week. Pay attention to your body, and you will know when you feel ready to increase your speed and distance.

If you are planning to start a running programme, visit Foot Solutions UK to get fitted for a new pair of running shoes. We will help you to select the right pair of shoes & some arch supports, to give you the support that you need to run comfortably.