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Back to Basics: Time and Effort

Many of you have recently reviewed their health and wellness goals for 2024. The recommendations from the CDC follow.

Adults aged 65 and older need:

  • At least 150 minutes a week (for example, 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week) of moderate-intensity activity such as brisk walking. Or they need 75 minutes a week of vigorous-intensity activity such as hiking, jogging, or running.

  • At least 2 days a week of activities that strengthen muscles.

A tool we have to help us reach our fitness goals without over doing or not challenging ourselves enough is the Rate of Perceived Exertion Chart. These charts help us listen to our bodies to and understand how hard we need to work and when we are overworking. Looking at this chart can be more helpful than an actual heart rate due to some medicines older adults take that regulate their heart rates such as beta blockers. Another benefit is that if you got great sleep, had a healthy breakfast and there is no excess stresses you are dealing with your moderate intensity is going to be a bit more vigorous than if you didn’t sleep well, you skipped breakfast and your car is making funny sounds. Using the RPE scale let’s us take those things into account. It also makes it easier to stick to our workouts. Today you might feel like walking at a 4 and in two days walking at a 6 but both count towards your total weekly minutes of activity. This chart lets you know when to pick up the pace or increase your weights. Now we have the amount and the intensity, time to head to class!

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