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Fitness Instructors Over 50 Share 8 Tips for Staying Active as You Age

Stay fit and keep your body youthful with these pro tips.

Ah, to be young again! We can't help you turn back time, but we can help you learn how to stay fit and keep your body youthful as you grow older. Eat This, Not That! spoke with fitness instructors who are over 50 and are as active as one can get. These fitness pros break down their best tips to stay active as you age and continue to lead a healthy lifestyle.

Getting in daily exercise and movement is a beneficial form of maintenance for your body—especially as you age. Sticking to a solid routine can reduce your risk of injuries and developing a chronic illness, including heart disease and dementia. Daily activity can also lower your stress level, decrease pain, promote better sleep, and enhance balance and flexibility, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine. In addition, it can up your "good" cholesterol levels. All of these reasons and more can help you live independently and even longer.

If you don't maintain an active routine as you age, research shows you can experience a loss of physical endurance and muscle strength. What does that mean? Well, simple daily tasks you may take for granted—like reaching for something in a cabinet, walking up the stairs to your bedroom, or even taking your pup out for a stroll—can become a struggle or impossibility. That's why we're here with tried-and-true tips to stay active as you age, according to fitness instructors who are over 50. Keep reading to learn all about them.

Organize a social time commitment to get active.

friends holding yoga mats walking to outdoor yoga class

Getting active can be fun—and social! According to 54-year-old Molly Stadum, instructor for Pure Barre, this is one of the reasons why she's a passionate advocate for barre. "I love having a time commitment where there is a teacher and other people, and working out with other fabulous people inspires me to stick to it," Stadum tells us. "I am inspired by the strength and beauty around me, and my barre classes are like my family and definitely are my friends who keep me motivated!"

Whatever class or exercise intrigues you most—from hiking nearby trails to playing some pickleball—is an awesome opportunity to catch up with a friend or a few.

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Treat yourself to workout gear you love.

close-up woman tying sneakers

Every now and then, treating yourself to a new pair of workout leggings, sneakers, or a sports tank that fits well and is durable gives you something to look forward to in your workouts. "[This] sounds silly, but having pieces that really work for my workouts and look good—I feel excited to put on my sports bra and tights or cute jacket and that makes me feel confident and inspired to give it my all," says Stadum.

Nourish your body.

woman eating salad

In today's day and age, it's so easy to rush out the door without eating breakfast, work through lunch, or stay up later than you should to cross more items off your to-do list. However, getting enough sleep and nourishing your body with a healthy diet should not be put on the back burner.

"I have learned to commit to giving my body the nourishment and rest it needs daily and that enables me to have more energy which enables me to stay active," Stadum tells us.

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Be consistent.

Molly Stadum
Molly Stadum

Being consistent with your healthy habits is the name of the game. "I go to Barre nearly every day," Stadum stresses. "Make it a part of your day, and you can't imagine a day without it. You don't have to think and force yourself to make it happen; [but rather,] it is built into your schedule!"

Get in a little bit of movement each day.

Peggy Teng
Peggy Teng

A little bit of movement each day adds up! It's something 52-year-old Peggy Teng, instructor for Pure Barre in Raleigh, NC, encourages you to do, "even if it's just a walk around the block or an impromptu self-dance party." She adds, "I absolutely love roping my clients into a little dance energy before or after class. Just do something for yourself that makes you smile!"

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Acknowledge and have gratitude for where you are.

woman meditating, concept of nighttime habits from longest living people

Another pro tip from Teng? Recognize where you are in life and your fitness routine, and celebrate it. In addition, staying on top of your health and wellness during and outside of your workouts is key.

"The overlying takeaway to keeping active as you age is to celebrate and respect where you are in life," Teng says. "Things are not the same in your 50s as they were in your 20s. Make sure you get annual checkups as well, go to the dentist, and have your vision checked."

Stadum also encourages practicing gratitude. "Be grateful for all you can do every day—and then DO it," she says. "I never take one day for granted. I also live by the mantra that I never regret exercising, I only regret skipping it!"

Make sure your fitness routine is well-rounded.

Kathy Seelagy
Kathy Seelagy

A well-rounded fitness routine gets results. For instance, cardio is all well and good, but putting all of your eggs in one basket is not! Make sure you have variety in your workouts, explains 59-year-old Kathy Seelagy, instructor for Pure Barre in Carlsbad, CA. She suggests incorporating aerobic exercise, strength training, balance work, and stretching into your regular routine.

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Drink plenty of water.

woman drinking water

Don't forget to hydrate. Something as simple as drinking plenty of water before, during, and after your workouts—and all day long, for that matter—can make a major difference in how you feel and your performance. "I keep a water bottle in my cup holder in my car, one at my desk, one next to my bed, and one on my kitchen counter just easy to grab and refill," Stadum tells us.

Alexa Mellardo
Alexa is the Mind + Body Deputy Editor of Eat This, Not That!, overseeing the M+B channel and delivering compelling fitness, wellness, and self-care topics to readers. Read more about Alexa
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