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Over 50? Don't Believe These Fitness Myths

By Sara Butler

If you're over 50 and thinking about starting a new fitness routine, you might be laboring under a misapprehension or two about exercise. The good news is that it's never too late to get fit. The first step is believing you can do it. The second step is putting these fitness-over-50 myths to rest for good.

Myth No. 1: You've Never Exercised, It's Too Late to Start Now

You're never too old to start a new exercise program. Your body can benefit from exercise no matter how many years you've got under your belt. In fact, studies show that people who adopt an active lifestyle demonstrate improvements in balance, cognitive performance, endurance, and strength at any age.

Myth No. 2: Walking Is Good Enough

While walking is a great exercise, your body needs variety. You'll get the most benefit from exercise by pushing your body to its limits through cardio conditioning, strength, and flexibility. Walking simply isn't enough to keep your heart in great shape, so try building some intervals into your next walk and pick up some strength training exercises too.

Myth No. 3: Weightlifting Is Bad for Joints

Speaking of strength training, don't think that lifting weights is bad for your joints. There's actually a lot of evidence that lifting weights is good for your joints and works to make them stronger. As long as you have good form and you're using correctly sized weights, then it's great for your bone health and your overall strength as you get older. There's no evidence that weightlifting leads to joint issues such as arthritis.

Myth No. 4: You're Just Not That Flexible

Flexibility is not static. You can feel as if you're inflexible, but the truth is that it's simply your muscles being tight. You can always work to make your muscles looser. You may never be able to make a human pretzel, since genetics do play a role in how much your body can bend and stretch, but you can improve upon what you've been given.

Getting older doesn't mean you can't do things, it may simply mean that you need to find a different way to get things done. The point is, you shouldn't let your age hold you back from pursuing the lifestyle you want. So get out and get active -- it's never too late!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Lynnwood, Wash.

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