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The Importance of Exercise as we Age

As we age, our metabolism slows down, making it harder to maintain and lose weight. Bone loss speeds up, decreasing the density of our bones. At the same time, we experience a decrease in muscle mass. You will also note that your maximal heart rate declines, connective tissue becomes less elastic, and balance and coordination become a challenge. This is a normal part of aging contributing to weight gain and the redistribution of fat, especially around the abdomen, breast, and arms (NASM, 2018).


According to the American Council on Exercise (2019), weight gain is caused by an energy imbalance when the number of calories you take in exceeds the amount of energy expended. So, one solution to this is to begin an exercise program to increase bone density and muscle mass.


The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend that all healthy adults participate in moderate aerobic activity for 30 minutes, five days a week (total of 150 min), or vigorous aerobic exercise for a minimum of 20 minutes, three days a week, followed by muscular strength and endurance for a minimum of two days a week.


References

American College of Sports Medicine. (2022). Physical activity guidelines resources. ACSM_CMS. https://www.acsm.org/education-resources/trending-topics-resources/physical-activity-guidelines

National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) & National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM). (2017). Nasm essentials of personal fitness training (6th ed.). Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Schroeder, J., Ph.D. (2019, March 27). Is weight gain during menopause inevitable? American council on exercise. https://www.acefitness.org/resources/pros/expert-articles/7260/is-weight-gain-during-menopause-inevitable/?topicScope=active-aging


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