Staying independent as you age doesn’t have to be a stroke of luck, or hit or miss. You can ensure you remain independent as you age by taking some important steps as regularly as you can. Now, although the earlier you start the better, it’s never too late to start looking after yourself. Below, you’ll find some pointers that will allow you to master independence, whatever age you are:
- Start Exercising Regularly
The first and one of the most important things is to make sure you’re exercising regularly. You don’t need to work out like an athlete or do crazy workouts that you don’t feel ready to do, but you should find a type of exercise that you enjoy and believe you can do in the long run and stick to it. In fact, mixing up the types of exercise you do is a great idea, as this will ensure you have all of your bases covered, whatever happens. For example:
- Pilates, yoga and even simple stretches can help you to stay flexible and release tension in the body.
- Walking is a great way to ensure you’re balancing out the time you spend sitting down, and also helps you get fresh air and vitamin D if you do it outside.
- Swimming is a great low impact exercise for the joints and can strengthen the whole body.
- Strength training keeps the muscles strong, which in turn can make living easier as you age.
- Classes can help to keep you motivated as you work out alongside others. They may not help you to reach ‘specific’ goals, but they can be a lot of fun and there’s no harm in doing them once in a while.
- Stop Being Afraid To Ask For Help If You Need It
When many think of being independent, they think of being hyper independent. This usually means not asking for help from anybody and doing things completely alone. However, humans are social creatures, and we do need some interaction from time to time. Not only that, we can’t always do things along. Fostering independence is great, but don’t become so independent that you can’t ask for help if you do need it. In fact, many elderly people opt for a senior care service so that they can continue to enjoy life in-home as they age.
- Focus On Eating A Balanced Diet
A balanced diet will work in harmony with your exercise routine to keep you healthy and happy. You don’t need to eat ‘clean’, but you certainly shouldn’t be eating a load of processed foods each day. Here are some pointers:
- To make sure you’re eating enough without obsessing, opt for 3 meals and 2 snacks each day. Depending on the size of your meals, you may want to have more.
- When plating your food, make sure you have carbs, healthy fats, and protein. Vegetables should be eaten with most meals and take up a large portion of the plate.
- Ensure you’re getting enough fiber.
- Don’t ‘ban’ foods or get sucked into unhealthy marketing tactics. Many ‘low calorie’ meals are not healthy, they are just marketed to those who want to lose weight. You will still be hungry. You’d be better off cooking a meal from scratch and actually feeling satiated afterward.
- Stick To Regular Health Appointments
Make sure you make a note of when your health appointments are due and keep up with them. Sticking to them will ensure you can catch anything early on and give you peace of mind. There may be nothing wrong with you at all, but visiting the doctor, dentist, and optician regularly is the only way to confirm this.
- Practice Using Technology
Yes, technology can cause problems. However, it’s here to stay. Getting used to using it will only be a good thing for you. Don’t call yourself a ‘technophobe’ as you have no reason to learn to use it this way. With good technology, you can make living at home easier and staying in touch with your loved ones a breeze.
- Keep Your Mind Alert
Keep your mind alert by doing puzzles, reading, and learning new things. Make sure you take care of your mental health, too!
- Look For New Hobbies and Challenges
Don’t stop learning just because you’re aging. Look for new hobbies and challenges and show yourself what you can do. It’s never too late to try something that you’ve always wanted to try.
Independence, as you age, is achievable for all – start now and you’ll see.
This is a collaborative post.