We’ve all heard that exercise is good for you. At a moderate intensity, the benefits of regular physical activity can improve your overall health. But did you know that regular exercise can also ward off some diseases and/or help manage some chronic conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, and arthritis? Interestingly, exercise can also help you improve your balance, keep your mind fit, and can prevent or reduce feelings of stress, anxiety, and depression.

Here are some helpful tips to find a way to get started with your routine:

Consult your health care provider
First and foremost, consult with your physician or physical therapist before starting any exercise regimen! Your physical therapist can design an appropriate exercise plan to meet your health and fitness goals.

Start Slow
If you have been sedentary for some time, as little as 50 minutes per week of moderate intensity activity can produce health benefits. A physical therapist can help you determine the safest and most effective physical activity plan.

Your ultimate goal is to work toward a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity per week with no more than 2 consecutive days off, and 2 days per week of strengthening exercises. Remember, in order to gain benefits, you need to be moderately active for at least 10 minutes at a time.

Engage in “meaningful activity.” 

For adults over the age of 50, meaningful activity includes strength training, flexibility, aerobics, and balance.

If you’re already physically active, give yourself a pat on the back. You’re well on your way to a healthy lifestyle. But, if you want to get on the road to a healthier you, make sure to familiarize yourself with the wellness resources that your community offers. You may have access to walking clubs, fitness classes, and even an exercise gym. And consider making a visit with your community’s wellness coordinator or rehab team to discuss your fitness goals. Your body will thank you.