Age and Exercise
Many people believe that exercise should be done only in childhood. The life process benefits all ages, though the type of exercise may differ. For children, games are the best, because they are interesting and every child likes to play. Children who get involved in studies and neglect games, should be encouraged to play games. If it is not possible then they should be coaxed to doing exercises. If the child plays a game where only legs are exercised then he should be taught exercises for upper parts of the body also. When a person completes his studies start doing exercises to keep fit throughout his life. This can be supplemented by games or gymnastics whenever possible.
When a person approaches his fortieth birthday, he is at the peak of his productive period. He is too busy and comparatively richer, he is too busy to exercise and eats rich food. At this age the bodily function starts slowing down. Circulation of blood becomes sluggish, there is tendency to become obese and joints will start getting stiff. At this age, exercise is most important. It will slow down the ageing process. He can play badminton or golf which is comparatively less strenuous. If you have been strenuous exercises can be done during your middle age. But if you are going to start exercising after a long lay-off then you have to do so slowly.
Amount of Exercise
At the age of 60, this will depend more on the condition of your body. A few can still do a strenuous exercise if they have been regular. For others a brisk walk to keep the circulation going is good enough. Keep winding your body clock with the aid of exercises so that it will keep on running smoothly. If you have frail health then go slow and do simple exercise. In old age, the body is like a fatigued machine. It is difficult to start it, but gradually it goes on working smoothly.
Motherhood and Exercise
Exercises during pregnancy, lactation and menstruation should not be discontinued. Exercises during pregnancy keep the abdominal muscles firm and help for a painless and easy delivery. They can be modified in the last few weeks of the pregnancy. A few day’s rest will be necessary after delivery. Exercises done during lactation will keep the body in shape. During menstruation, exercises can be continued. If bleeding is profuse they can be modified.
When to Exercise
You should exercise any time of the day, when you are free. If you have a choice, the afternoon time is the best. After a day’s work the flexibility in the joints is more, so the exercise can be done easily.
You can do them in the morning. At this point of time, the joints are a little stiff and the heart has slowed down after the night’s rest. You may do a little warming up before you start doing a strenuous exercise. There should not be any tiring of the body. For you will not be left with energy to do the day’s work.
It can also be done before retiring to bed. It will refreshing for those who do mental work. Those who exert physically during the day it will be very refreshing, but do not forget to take your meal 2 hours before doing exercise. Do not take a heavy dinner.
If the routine of work gives time for exercising twice a day, do some exercises in the morning for additional little exercise in the evening will give a full quota of day’s exercise.
Exercises should never be done close to meal times. Vigorous exercises should be done atleast half an hour before or two hours after the main meal. When food is taken, the blood goes to the digestive organ and the nerve energy is diverted to it. If exercises are done just after a meal, the blood and nerve energy will be diverted to muscles and digestion will be impaired. It is better to give the body on e task at a time and then it functions better. If you want to do light exercises like walking or playing golf you can do it just after a light meal of curd and salad or soup and toast or fruits. But if you feel uneasy even after such a sparse meal follow the rule of half an hour after meals.
You need not exercise 365 days of a year. Take a day off every week, but do not keep on increasing the off days. Do not do extra exercise the next day if you have missed a day of exercise. If you have missed it for a week, do not think that it requires some rituals to start it again.
When not to Exercise
A useful weapon can be misused if you are over-enthusiastic. Do not exercise when you are ill. Rest is the best cure during illness. Stop there and then if you feel pain during or after exercises or if you have inflammation of certain joints give some rest for healing. You may feel sore the next day after exercises, this may happen when you are a beginner or over enthusiastic, take rest for a day and you will recover.
If you are weak or too tired avoid active exercises you can take a passive exercise in the form of massage. Avoid exercises if you have a strain or a torn ligament. Rest for few days and you will come out of it. A few stretching exercises are permitted to keep up the mobility.
Go easy on Exercises
Start with exercises which are easy to perform. If you start with strenuous exercises to get quick results you will be disappointed. When you start exercises you will develop soreness, sprains or strain in your joints. Take few days’ rest. These are not permanent and they will pass off. Do not over exercise, do not use all your surplus energy for exercise, it may be destructive.
Slow and steady wins the race
Select the right exercises, do them properly and for a limited time. You can increase your exercises once a week. Know your limit. Always be sure that exercises you are doing can be done easily.
Overdoing or underdoing exercises is bad. If you do not feel any increases in the strength or girth of your muscles steadily probably you are underdoing your exercises. Test yourself and you will know how far you can go.
Start with 5 minutes of exercises if you are a beginner. The speed and the pause between exercises will determine what exercises are to be taken. You will be surprised to find out how much you can do in five minutes.
You may increase your exercise time by two minutes every week do not exceed 2 minutes. This time is carefully chosen to keep you fit for physiological needs. The rate of exercises can be slowed or increased. If you feel you have not done enough exercise you can increase the speed till you feel exhausted. Select your exercises. Exercises done in a reclining position need more exertion than while standing. You can choose a special apparatus to exercise if you require support. If you are keen on muscles lay stress on muscles then keep on increasing the resistance.