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Old 01-23-2015, 10:24 AM
 
Location: Prescott AZ
6,124 posts, read 9,081,096 times
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I think if I could find something that would offer intellectual stim while I am doing something physical, I would be sold. I would have to read or write or be on the computer while exercising. Just watching TV would not do it. There must be ways to do this and I need to explore that.
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Old 01-23-2015, 11:56 AM
 
Location: Near Manito
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Podcasts work for me. Freakonomics, This American Life, the BBC history series...
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Old 01-23-2015, 01:23 PM
 
Location: SoCal
6,066 posts, read 9,529,219 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhxBarb View Post
I think if I could find something that would offer intellectual stim while I am doing something physical, I would be sold. I would have to read or write or be on the computer while exercising. Just watching TV would not do it. There must be ways to do this and I need to explore that.
Try one of these: https://www.google.com/search?q=%22b...=1361&bih=1246
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Old 01-23-2015, 01:36 PM
 
Location: Idaho
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I joined a gym almost 15 years ago and it was one of the best decisions in my life. I have always been very active but mainly doing non-intensive activities like gardening, walking, household work, easy hiking etc. I was healthy but not very strong.

Joining a gym gives me opportunities to do both aerobic exercise (treadmill, rowing/ski machine, swimming) and strength training (free weights & machine). After going to the gym for a year or so , I became significantly stronger and had more endurance. I did not loose a lot of weight (107lbs to 100lbs on a 5'2" frame) but clearly traded fat to some muscles. Most importantly, my bone structure is much stronger. Osteoporosis runs in my family with the women have light frames and consume very little dairy products. So as we get older, adding weight lifting to our daily routine to strengthen bones becomes a necessity. From what I have seen and read, broken bones from falling are common causes of physical disability for older folks.

I also derided many side benefits from my gym habit. I became a better swimmer which led to a new hobby of scuba diving. The gym rowing machine led to learning to row for real on the river in the last 13 years. Rowing is now an essential part of my life (I row/scull daily 1 to 2 hours from April to November). During rowing season, I reduce my gym time to ~3 times a week mainly for weight lifting and swimming. For those who live near a rowing club, I highly recommend checking out the sport. It is a low impact and whole body exercise. You can work out while enjoying nature and the great outdoor. Joining a rowing club also provides wonderful social interactions and opportunities for community services (our adult club also support local highschool scholastic rowing).

Another great health benefit of routine daily exercise is diabetic control. I was diagnosed with diabetic condition (also runs in the family!) in October 13. My doctor said that it was mainly heredity because I was doing everything right (not overweight, exercise daily, eat a balance diet with whole grains, lots of fruits/vegetables, minimum red meat etc). She suggested me to tweak up my diet a bit to see if it helped before taking medication. I upped my exercise time to at least 1.5hrs/day, cut my carb consumption in half and replacing it with more proteins (fish, eggs, cheese), fruits and vegetables. Within 3 months, my A1C dropped from 6.8 to 5.6 and fasting blood sugar went from 150 range to 110 range. I monitor my blood sugar almost daily and clearly notice an association between working out the day before with lower fasting blood sugar the next morning.

One can certainly exercise at home without going to the gym. As a matter of fact, I set up a home gym 6 months ago after quitting the gym which I had joined 15 years ago! The place got too crowded in the weight lifting room and they crammed so many activities to the pool. I got one of the high quality bike trainer (to set my bike on) and an ab/hyper bench (both for less than $500). These tools along with a cheap jumping rope, an exercise mat and a set of free weights allow me to do almost all the stuffs I do at the gym except swimming. I checked out another club few weeks ago mainly for the pool and decided to join it. To exercise at home, you need to be highly motivated and have strong disciplines. It is very easy to slack off one day then 2 days then a week or more. Joining a gym motivates you to keep up the routine since you have to pay for it and would feel guilty in not using the place ;-)

Last edited by BellaDL; 01-23-2015 at 01:59 PM..
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Old 01-23-2015, 05:26 PM
 
Location: Southwest Washington State
21,868 posts, read 14,377,315 times
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Originally Posted by Happy in Wyoming View Post
Have you ever heard of a Nobel prizewinner, a true innovator, or a great author who revealed attendance at a ''gym'' to an interviewer?

Think back to school. Were the athletes the intellectual elite?

Romp with your dogs; take leisurely bicycle rides; buy a stationary exercise bicycle if you feel compelled. Why, however, go someplace filled with boring people to suffer a very enhanced risk of infections including MRSA?

Physical culture won't extend your life although you may think it has. Try to imagine sitting in a doctor's waiting room with nothing to read. Think of those beloved periods of P.E. in school.

Have some coconut ice cream as a reward for thinking about exercise; you deserve it. Then read something. Consider the medieval traveler Ibn al-Mujawir who wrote of the edible monopedalian poets of Hadramawt. We could say that the concept represented a meeting of Pliny and Euell Gibbons centuries before the latter was born. How many physical culturists would even know what I'm talking about? You do, however.
I think you are wrong to discourage people to find exercise wherever they can. I don't have a dog; I am not interested in bicycling; I dislike exercising at home. The community gym is perfect for me. If it isn't perfect for you, then fine. But why discourage people from a doing positive thing?

How do you know the people at the gym are boring? The ones I've talked to don't seem more boring than I am. A lot of them are like me--seniors trying to keep loose. Some are trying to get back in shape after surgery or some other health problem.

I don't know if exercising will extend my life, or not. I mean, I could get hit by a bus in the gym's parking lot! But I do know that I am stronger, have more stamina and feel better in general because I've added trips to the gym to my week. And that adds to the quality of the life I have now.
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Old 01-23-2015, 05:48 PM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,975,704 times
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I think I may have a gym buddy for the senior center gym. I spoke with her today (I met her at yoga a few months ago). This would be great for me, although I was planning to go anyway alone.
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Old 01-24-2015, 10:03 PM
 
Location: Southwest Washington State
21,868 posts, read 14,377,315 times
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Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
I think I may have a gym buddy for the senior center gym. I spoke with her today (I met her at yoga a few months ago). This would be great for me, although I was planning to go anyway alone.
Good for you! I agree that it helps to have a gym buddy. Don't forget to buy some nice athletic wear for yourself.
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Old 01-24-2015, 10:31 PM
 
48,516 posts, read 83,932,349 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
I think I may have a gym buddy for the senior center gym. I spoke with her today (I met her at yoga a few months ago). This would be great for me, although I was planning to go anyway alone.
Give it a go. I thought my wife might but she loves going now. Remember tho to do a search on pulse rate and go for the long run increasing as you go. In a few months you'll feel the difference.
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Old 01-25-2015, 03:12 PM
 
Location: Woodbury, MN
1,465 posts, read 1,533,501 times
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I started going to the gym a few years ago. The reason was to lose weight and get in better condition so I wouldn't be as likely to end up being a retired person in the future, going to the doctor 2 - 3 times per week. After about about 8 months I was down 70 pounds. Lately, I've lost some ground on that weight loss and have to work harder to get my weight back down. The gym has many group fitness classes, which I prefer to using the machines, which I also use. I find that the aerobic classes, such as Zumba, are not boring as using the machines. The Zumba classes also help exercise my mind. The choreography for each song is memorized by the instructors, rather than using some random freestyle choreography. After several classes, I find that I can memorize the choreography and usually know what moves correspond with each part of each song. As the songs play, I am able to think of what the next types of moves are coming up. Sometimes, an instructor might forget the next moves, and often times, I can remember those moves. Time time goes by very quickly during a Zumba class, the hour seems to go by very quickly.

In weight lifting classes, after a few weeks, I picked up a 12 pound body bar that was used for very repetitive moves in the class. When I picked up the body bar, I was sure that the body bar must have been mislabeled and was actually a 9 pound body bar. The 12 pound body bar wasn't mislabeled at all. I became stronger and the 12 pound body bar felt lighter than it used to.

When using the machines, such as the treadmill, elliptical, or cycle, it's important to get some good noise cancelling headphones since gyms can be quite noisy. It's very boring to workout with the machines without listening to music. A tablet might be an alternative which you could use to watch videos or TV programs. Some of the newer treadmills have a built in video monitor which can playback videos where it looks like you are walking on trails in the national parks, Germany or New Zealand.

The pool is usually where very overweight people start, because it is easier to do aqua classes when you are overweight. The gym I go to has many group fitness classes which are included. The personal training is not included and is very expensive, so I do not use the personal training. I can learn a lot of the weight lifting training moves by taking weight lifting training classes at not additional cost. It's also very easy to meet people that will help you figure out how to use some of the machines or to exercise in the correct way.

It's important to go to a gym that does not tie you down to a contract. Probably all gyms will wave the signup fee if you insist that the fee be waved. You should be able to try a gym for free without signing up for at least 5 days. Some gyms have lockers that require padlocks, so you may need to purchase a padlock. Some gyms provide towels, other gyms don't supply towels. It's also important that the gym isn't located too far away, otherwise, you'll stop going after awhile.

I think it's also important to exercise in a variety of different ways, which is easier to do a a gym, rather than at home, since you probably would only have one or two types of machines. Although you could get a machine, some free weights, and maybe an exercise stability ball for home use to supplement the gym.
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Old 01-25-2015, 05:00 PM
 
48,516 posts, read 83,932,349 times
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When I checked out gyms and fitness centers I came to conclusion that fitness center was more to my liking as a senior. One thing I noticed is that the body builders types constantly at free weights are the ones you need to be sure and clean after . Perhaps that is because they are young but I do not see this with other young people who stick to the machines and not free weights.I have seen the fitness center people speak to a few also because it one of the rules. Most I see do a very good job with all the paper towels and cleaner near every station. I clean well before and after every use.
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