Fitness after 60? Is it possible? Of course! As a fit 60-year-old woman (well, 64 actually and counting!) I say it can be done, my friends. If I can maintain a healthy level of fitness, so can you.
Now that I’m well into the 6th decade of my life, I’m living the experience of taking care of my body as it ages. There’s no doubt about it, my friends, growing older is not for the weak or faint of heart. Things just happen, and you have no control over them…wrinkles, crepey skin, drooping, sagging, creaking joints…it’s no picnic. And forget about jumping up off the floor when you’ve been sitting or kneeling…not gonna happen.
But, I’m going to share with you what I do to stay in shape in my 60’s. I’m far from perfect, my body is no different than any other person in my generation, so this is not about my telling you how perfect I am. Once you gaze upon the photos in this post it will become quite evident that I’m just another middle aged woman, but a relatively fit middle aged woman!
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I’ve been doing some of these exercises and routines for years…many years. I’m so grateful that my health has allowed me to work out without interruption for all this time. My oldest son was a baby when I decided to start exercising, and that was back in 1980.
It is a commitment for sure. Some people decide they don’t want to put in the effort. That’s not who I am. Maybe I’m too vain, but I don’t want to have to buy clothes in larger sizes or be limited in what I do because my body is too heavy or out of shape for me to participate in activities I enjoy.
So I choose to exercise regularly and eat healthy most of the time, a part of my overall philosophy of maintaining my physical, emotional and spiritual health.
NOTE: I am not offering advice or telling you what to do. Only you can determine what is right and healthy for you. Always consult a physician before you begin any type of exercise program.
Fitness After 60 – exercise for 60 year old females
There are 4 types of exercise I engage in regularly: walk or dance, ride a stationary bike, do floor exercises + strength training, and low impact aerobics.
My goal is to get in 2 types of exercise every day, depending on my schedule and what other physical activity I’m engaged in.
By the way, I recently purchased a Fit Bit ALTA, and I absolutely love it! Keeping track of steps, exercise, sleep, meals and more is all in one place, along with the history for each. Really cool.Fitness After 60 - is it possible to stay in shape? Of course! Click To Tweet
I am learning how to do a better job of listening to my body, too, as I age. Sometimes it’s difficult to determine if I’m really, really tired or just feeling a bit lazy.
Most days I’m good for two exercise sessions, one in the morning and one later in the day. The morning might be 20 minutes of core and glute exercises with some strength training, or a 30-minute dance workout; then a 4 to 5-mile bike ride in the early evening, about 30 minutes.
So I’m not talking about hours of workouts every day. No way is that gonna happen, at least not for me with my business obligations and other activities. If I work in a total of 50 minutes of exercise most days I’m more than satisfied.
There are a number of ways to stay fit and strong, and one of them is to ‘exercise’ our minds! We all have times when some encouragement, inspiration and the written word can provide what we need.
I created a series of short, to-the-point eGuides just for those times:
Whether you need some inspiration with confidence, healthy eating, defining your style…it’s all here for you.
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Walking is a Wonderful Way to Stay in Shape
For me, walking has more benefits than the physical exercise as part of my ‘fitness after 60’ plan. It helps me to relax and unwind, think/ponder/plan, listen to music and enjoy the beautiful outdoors. Did you know that being outside, near trees, can actually help you feel better? Walking 30 minutes a day can also help with digestion and regularity as well as lowering the risk of chronic disease.
I recently moved from SW Florida to Michigan, so the year-round ability to walk outside just got totally revamped!
At first I felt a loss of what to do, and being cooped up inside was a huge adjustment. But then I discovered something that helped me get the aerobic exercise plus teach my body to become more limber and (hopefully) graceful.
What was it? Body Groove, created by Misty Tripoli.
I can get in my steps plus an aerobic workout, all in one. Most of the Body Groove workouts include some HIIT (high intensity interval training), an additional benefit.
I subscribed to the online program and have the option to do any of Misty’s ever-increasing workouts. I will say, this has been a lifesaver for me through the frigid winter months.
Spring is just about upon us as I write this, so a midday walk is going to be added to most of my days very soon!
Riding a Stationary Bike Helps Me Unwind!
I’ve found that a stationary exercise bike fits my lifestyle the best.
There is something about pedaling away on my bike and enjoying a bit of Netflix that really helps me relax. I don’t have to think about traffic, where I’m going to ride or anything else. I just ride and ride, enjoy the lake view out my window and watch TV. A 4 to 5-mile ride usually works for me.
As with many other types of bikes, I can adjust the tension to make my legs work harder, and I do that sometimes to put in some extra effort. Usually, I work up a good sweat so I know my body is putting forth an effort.
2020 update: After relocating and basically starting over in the furniture and daily living department, I decided to purchase a stationary bike that also includes a system for upper body strength training.
Yes, I’m a multi-tasker! It’s really cool, check it out:
Revive Your Mind, Nourish Your Body, Refresh Your Spirit…FRESH START CHALLENGE
Floor Exercises and Strength Training
What type of strength training for a 60-year-old woman is appropriate? Well, we are all different in terms of our overall health and abilities. But I will say this: just because we’re over 60 now doesn’t mean we can’t lift weights!
First I’ll discuss the other types of strength training I do to keep my muscles firm for my age.
I have been doing sit-ups for over 30 years. I usually do 3 to 4 sets of 20 during a workout session.
Faithfully doing this exercise has helped me to keep a decent waistline (you know…I still have some curve there!), something that tends to disappear as we age. I’m pretty happy about that.
This is another exercise I started doing years ago. It looks kind of goofy but it really helps keep the glute muscles toned, and we know how things start to sag as we age!
This is how it works: I lay on the floor with my knees bent, the lift my butt into the air and hold it for a second or two before lowering. (there is an example of this exercise HERE)
I also do strength training, to help keep my arms strong. I don’t use heavy weights, just 5 lb and 8 lb, but it’s enough for me to get in a good workout.
I recently found this great arm workout on Pinterest that emphasizes that droopy, saggy, nasty under arm area that happens as we age. It’s only been a short while but I’m pretty happy with this set of exercises: https://www.christinacarlyle.com/arm-workout-for-women/
Low Impact, Joint Friendly Aerobics
Body Dynamix is the name of this low impact, joint friendly workout for mature people, anyone with mobility problems, injuries or other issues that make it difficult or painful to to exercise. This program was created by fitness expert Debbie Siebers, who designed it to build up your muscles without breaking down your joints.
I’m in good health, don’t have any particular joint issues, but still as a person in my 60’s, the flexibility is not what it was, and I don’t want to injure myself working out or doing other activities. So I have found Body Dynamix to be the perfect method for
- proper stretching techniques
- yoga basics
- aerobic exercise – low impact
The workout is offered digitally (I use Roku) or on DVD, so you can decide how and where you want to work out. No weights are used, but the strength training is there. Notice the hand towel I’m using as I follow along with Debbie and crew. It’s quite amazing how much of a workout I get using just one simple towel in my hands.
There are several sections to the program, each runs anywhere from 12 to 20 minutes or so. You can choose which section(s) you want to do at any given time. I like to do one of the warm-ups, then add some yoga or low impact aerobics to it.
Here are the individual routines that are offered:
- Body Insurance (warm-up)
- Yoga Flows & Poses
- Tone & Walk
- Cardio Walk
- Core Walk
- Core on the Floor (this takes my sit-ups and glute exercises to a whole new level!)
- Restore & Repair
Debbie makes everything enjoyable and interesting, and of course, she is a beautiful example of fitness as we mature. I pretty much hate her 🙂
If you decide to do one form of exercise only in your desire to maintain fitness after 60, or whatever your age, this is what you need to do. It doesn’t cost a lot for what you get in return, about $60, well worth the investment! See all of the details about Body Dynamix.
So, I’ve shared all of my good stuff about how I stay in shape and strive to maintain fitness after 60.
How about you?
What are YOU going to do today to start or maintain your health and overall fitness? You know what the worst thing you can do is? Nothing. Assuming an “I don’t care” attitude or mindset can be devastating to your health, my friend. Please don’t go there.
The best action you can take is…right now…today! Start slowly and build from there.
You’re never too old to stay in shape!