Exercise Is In Our Job Description.

Just Do It Already.

We had just finished another strenuous exercise class at the local Y. Along with 20 or so others, John S. and I had been going to that same instructor’s—her name is Sarah—Monday night 6:30 hour-long routine for four or so years; we called it “Sarah’s House Of Pain.” Squats, light weight thrusts and lifts, stair step-ups, push-ups, bicycles, curls, burpees, and, oh boy, more.

John S. was about my age, early-mid 70s, and he was a regular, not only in Sarah’s class but in kickboxing and yoga classes at the same Y. “Why do you do all this, John?”, I asked as we walked out of the fitness room while the next class of Pilates students poured in.

“It’s our job description. We’re seniors, right? We HAVE to exercise,” he said.

We have to. We have to remain strong, flexible, and robust. Clearly, —and as much research has revealed—that, plus a good diet, are the keys to aging well.

We are pretty confident readers of SeniorsSkiing.com agree with John S. and the research. From our many surveys of our readership, we know that you not only enjoy snow sports, but also many other kinds of activities including “fitness”.

If you are not a regular at the gym, you may want to reflect. We hope you start and develop a routine. That’s the key to success at the gym: routine. Not one routine, but several different ones. You will find you need to focus on building and maintaining muscle strength. You will also need to exercise your heart with cardiac workouts. Often overlooked is the third aspect of conditioning for seniors: flexibility. Regularly practicing Yoga with an instructor who gives clear cues can make an exponential difference in range of motion and muscle suppleness.

Our personal routine involves muscle conditioning classes with trained instructors (“Sarah’s House Of Pain”), individual rotations around the gym with light weights, lifting machines, and cardio steps, treadmills, and ellipticals. We also take yoga classes once a week, sometimes twice. And we try to go at least five days a week, sometimes in the evening, sometimes in the morning. Sometimes, we just go for a walk. Variety.

We know other seniors swim every day, bike, run, climb, hike, walk around the block, and pump iron. Every day. Routine. It’s our job.

Our question to our readers: What’s your routine? Why does it work for you? Please respond in the comments section below. We’d like to learn how you approach your “job”.

In the spirit of pursuing our fitness theme, this week we reprise our Shape Up exercise series with a set of exercises that build intensity. Time to start and get with it.

This Week

In addition to our ongoing Shape Up series, we are introducing two new contributors to SeniorsSkiing.com. Please welcome them to our pages.

Herb Stevens has been known on television as “The Skiing Weatherman”. He’s been reporting on snow and ski conditions in major Eastern markets since the late 80s. He knows his snow. He’ll be providing weekly updates on how the weather is effecting snow sports across the country. This week, he places his bet on this winter’s forecast. Here it is.

Weight forward, tips loaded, good.

Bob True is a UK-based ski coach and instructor. From time to time, he will write about technique specifically focused on seniors. We look forward to seeing his thoughts on confidence and skill-building. His first article is a general view on gaining control. Check it out here.

Once again, thanks so much for reading SeniorsSkiing.com. Tell your friends and remember, there are more of us everyday, and we aren’t going away.

 

10 Comments

  1. I am 65 and ride a mountain bike all year long. 4 days a week is the usual routine and I ride with group that pushes me. Sometimes I just cruise but a lot of rides are pushing me and that extra effort is what keeps the cardio and legs good for skiing.

    Nice reminder here to all of us. Keep doing it and don’t think about aging.

  2. Avatar Will Dunnigan says:

    I am 63 and go to the gym 5, if not 6 days a week. It’s about my overall well being with a specific eye on preparing for SKI SEASON!

  3. My wife and I are both 65. We work out three days a week at a gym with a personal trainer. Aerobic warm-up before each hour-long workout with weights.

    With fall here, I will concentrate more on my leg work!

    I will retire at the end of the year and expect to get into the gym three more days each week to increase the aerobic workouts and throw some yoga into the mix.

  4. I’m 61. I do Pilates 2x/week. I need to get back to a routine, either at home again or check out the group fitness classes at my gym.

  5. 74 and practicing physical therapist and I mix it up. Walk and hike whenever I can. Yoga, Pilates. weights and Zumba.

  6. I am going on 69 and I have a regular routine I have followed for decades. I get up at around 05:30, drink a pot of coffee and head to the gym. I do cardio exercise on a stationary bicycle two days in a row, then do resistance training (free weights and machines) every third day, seven days a week. When I finish, I head home, eat breakfast and go to work. I’m considering trying to work yoga into my routine due to stiffness I have started to experience over the last few years but have not done this, yet.

    • Definitely try yoga. Find a good instructor who knows how to give cues and correct your body position. Otherwise, you might not get the most out of the practice. Helps to read up on the underlying principles of yoga as it is very interesting.

  7. ⛷75 …Tai Chi, Qigong instructor at YMCA. ☯ Also do swim exercise.
    Most enjoyable exercise is sauna and hot tub

  8. Avatar George Karlsven says:

    I am 69, soon to be 70. Year round I am in the gym three days a week for an upper and lower body weights workout. I focus on strength not bulk now so the weight I am pushing is lower than it was 20 years ago. In the winter I go to the gym at night. I have been surprised how well I sleep after an evening workout.

    I live in Utah and normally start riding my bike in late April. I ride along a river trail up Provo Canyon 20 to 25 miles round trip five days per week. I switched to a recumbent several years ago. It is much more fun and much easier on my wrists, back and backside! In the winter I ski several days a week.

  9. Avatar John Murphy says:

    Dr. John Murphy, Kent Is., MD- I’ll be 77 yrs. this coming Feb. I make a yearly ski trip with friends of similar age and their 30- ish sons. In order to keep up with the latter group, I exercise six days a week. Swim 1,000 yds., and do flexibility & Lyndsay Vaughn’s eight basic exercises, 3 X wk. The other three days I do the Nautilus circuit, especially legs ( quads, “hams”, etc ), stationary bike , and walk 1 1/2 mi. Sunday is a day of rest. I haven’t been left behind yet, and…sometimes lead!!

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