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Advice wanted about best exercise to start

(26 Posts)
grannyrebel7 Sun 19-Jan-20 10:05:55

I haven't done any exercise for about 10 years. That said I do walk a lot, but is this enough? Should I be doing something else as well? Would value everyone's opinion.

tanith Sun 19-Jan-20 10:20:30

Walking is a good start but you should do some strength and flexibility exercises too.
This NHS site tells you how but do start gently or speak to GP first.

BlueSky Sun 19-Jan-20 10:22:46

My only exercise is walking too and I don't believe I need to do anything else. I walk till I feel comfortable with it no more, I don't think pushing yourself when you are older does you any good. Swimming could be a good alternative if you like it.

Gymstagran Sun 19-Jan-20 10:40:17

I agree with tanith and you can increase the benefits of walking by varying your route, include uphill if possible, varying your speed and increasing the distance. The ideal is to walk at a speed that leaves you slightly out of breath but still able to talk. The NHS exercises are very good and carrying heavy shopping improves strength.

Grannyknot Sun 19-Jan-20 11:58:05

Grannyrebel I go to a "Cardio & Core" exercise class once a week that I really enjoy - it gives me a balance between flexibility (because we also do some stretching) and muscle and cardiac strength.

However, I also walk a lot and the exercise trainer, who is qualified and also a nutritionist always praises that saying "Walking is one of the best exercise". I agree with people who say that you can "add value" to your walks by carrying shopping*, speeding up, taking a hill etc.

*My husband is very impressed by my bicep muscles smile

Patsy70 Sun 19-Jan-20 17:38:24

There is another thread: 'Useful advice on improving your health', which might also be worth looking at.

Pantglas2 Sun 19-Jan-20 17:53:05

I’ve heard the best exercise is the one you keep doing! So choose the one you enjoy whether it’s walking, cycling, swimming whatever.....

grannyrebel7 Sun 19-Jan-20 18:12:33

Thanks everyone- I think I will have a look around and see what's available locally.

bikergran Sun 19-Jan-20 18:19:58

can anyone tell me where I can find the vidoes from the above link,,it says somewhere there are videos to watch.hmm

3dognight Sun 19-Jan-20 18:24:12

Yes do something that you enjoy!
Just start gently and build up you're strength and stamina slowly. I hope you do well, and feel better for it.

tanith Sun 19-Jan-20 18:32:32

bikergran click on the tab fitness guides then NHSfitness studio then choose from the 4 blue tabs at the top the videos are there.

M0nica Sun 19-Jan-20 19:30:37

Walking is fine, I walk nearly everyday, but it does nothing for flexibility or balance.

I do Tai Chi. it is easy to do and we hold on to the back of a chair if we find balancing on one foot difficult.It is very good for flexibility and balance. Lack of flexibility, to look over your shoulder, or twist your neck, can be a reason for losing your driving licence.

I also do pilates, but that is quite strenuous, although some places have pilates for older people or sitting pilates for those whose capacity for activity is severely compromised.

endlessstrife Mon 20-Jan-20 16:33:32

Speak to your GP before doing anything, just for a health check. Better to be safe.

Jane10 Mon 20-Jan-20 16:43:10

Doubt if GPs would welcome people for 'health checks' somehow!
I find aquafit classes very good. Lots of cardio work with resistance built in by doing it against the water. It also helps as it's supportive of joints.
I also go to therapeutic yoga classes for stretching work.

endlessstrife Mon 20-Jan-20 16:45:02

Of course they would! Prevention is better than cure, and probably a lot cheaper!

BlueSapphire Mon 20-Jan-20 16:45:37

I walk a lot and am in a couple of walking for health groups which makes it a social occasion as well, especially as we have a coffee/chat afterwards.
I also do gentle yoga, and a ballet class, Silver Swans.

Jane10 Mon 20-Jan-20 16:47:09

Wouldn't even get an appointment if I told the GPs receptionist that's what I wanted!
Private companies happily do assessment days though for the 'worried well'.

ladymuck Mon 20-Jan-20 16:48:56

There are lots of little exercises you can do while going about your daily routine. A few stretches and muscle clenches can be done at any time, without needing special equipment or

Gaunt47 Mon 20-Jan-20 16:53:55

Interestingly our GP surgery has just started offering check ups for oldies, principally for people who don't visit the doctors (want to see if we're still alive I guess!). I had my first appointment last week. A bit superficial but it'll be interesting to get the results next week.
I do wish there were Silver Swans in my area, although we do have a 'keep on your feet' class once a week. Great fun.

endlessstrife Mon 20-Jan-20 17:11:30

Jane, the receptionist has no right to know why you want an appointment. It is just common sense, if you’re older, and thinking of changing/ adding to your exercise routine, to speak to a health professional first. In fact at my leisure centre, they actively recommend it.

Jane10 Mon 20-Jan-20 17:18:16

Our receptionists are required to triage reasons for wanting an appointment. There is a polite notice in the waiting room and on the website about it. It helps them to direct patients to the most appropriate form of input from the practice. It could lead to a telephone appointment with one of the doctors, an appointment with a practice nurse, phlebotomist or district nurse. Callers can be redirected to direct contacts for physio or other therapies. Finally, they might make an appointment to see a doctor face to face. The system is very efficient and maximises doctors time.

endlessstrife Mon 20-Jan-20 19:18:59

sometimes they ask, and if it’s not private, I tell them, but we’re not obligated. All patients receive a phone call from the doctor in the first instance, and then he/she decides how best to treat them. I can’t see how a receptionist would be qualified enough to make decisions about how to triage patients. Each to their own I suppose.

grannyrebel7 Mon 20-Jan-20 19:28:13

Thanks for the advice. Think I'll give the GP a miss though. I can never get through on the phone but if I am lucky enough to they'll say we haven't got any appointments left call again tomorrow! Pilates will probably be my exercise of choice.

Cunco Mon 20-Jan-20 20:01:41

I think you are entitled to a free NHS Health Check if you are aged 40 to 74 subject to a couple of conditions. This has details:

I had one and it suggested a couple of things I might like to do. It's a personal decision if you want one, assuming your local authority is part of the scheme.

I started exercise from very unfit and have since run a London Marathon and 20 or so half marathons! For me, a key, each time I begin training, is to start very gently. I don't suggest everyone should do what I did but I would think a short charity walk would provide motivation and a good starting point.

bikergran Mon 20-Jan-20 20:56:11

thanks tanith smile