You, like me, have probably heard the expression, “If you do something for 21 days it becomes habit. ” Well, that applies to establishing any new habit such as quitting smoking, learning to rise at 7 am instead of 8 am, eating a more nutritional diet, being happy or exercising.
I don’t know if it easier for younger people, but I can attest that for those of us over 50 breaking old habits is harder than starting new ones. So, if you apply that principle properly you would begin a new habit to replace an old one.
My father, now in his mid-eighty’s, recently was diagnosed with congestive heart failure and has had to break some old habits and start new ones. One that he recently brought up in conversation was, he has become accustomed to walking before the heat of the day and before his morning meds make him lethargic.
For a few weeks after his hospitalization, he found the effects of the medications difficult to deal with, they made him very sleepy, dizzy, and lightheaded. One thing that helped was exercise. If he got up and out early before the side effects set in, he enjoyed his day more.
For those over 50, who haven’t been regular exercisers during their lives, adding exercise to their day may take the full 21 days to become habit. But, that’s okay. This gives you time to develop a routine that is right for you; one that allows you to start out slowly and build up over the next few weeks.
One exercise to consider is yoga; it is perfect for this type of person. It is easy to learn, isn’t hard on the joints; you can practice the poses at home when it is convenient for you, plus, it is centuries old, so the poses have been well proven over time. You can watch a yoga class on cable, buy a DVD of beginner and intermediate classes, take an introductory class at a local yoga studio or buy a book on the discipline.
Being over 50 doesn’t mean that you can’t start a new lifestyle, it just means that you have a wealth of knowledge about yourself and your body, which will help you get off the couch and get active. It is the perfect time of life to correct some of the ills you’ve perpetrated on your body and prepare it for a good long healthy retirement.
Yoga is just one way to improve your lifestyle, your attitude, your physical appearance, your health, your eating habits and your social life. Whatever type of exercise you decide on, take on the challenge with alacrity and determination, and above all have fun.
Anyway you look at it, it's fun to ponder.
Keith E. Renninson is a motivational speaker and co-author of the popular parenting tool and illustrated storybook for children, “Zooch the Pooch, My Best Friend". Through the 1990's with much self-examination, academic study, bicycle racing, and mountain climbing, he discovered a renewed zest of life, which included a love of metaphysics, philosophy, humor, and writing and speaking. As Keith says, “Some days you're the pigeon and some days you're the statue. . . it's all in what you make of it. " You can read more about “Zooch the Pooch" or contact Keith to speak at: http://www.zoochthepooch.com Keith and his co-author Michael Conrad Kelley speak to teens and adults on “The Seven Simple Steps to a More Fulfilling Life. " This course focuses on how to build a successful Life Philosophy that works for each individual.