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It’s never too late to get fit. Enjoy this guest post by Polly Hansen!

No matter how old you are, physical fitness is very important — and even more so as you get older. Women over the age of 50, in particular, stand to gain so much more from physical activity than just weight loss. For one, researchers from the University of Valencia note how physical activity can help with bone health, which can become a serious concern during post-menopause. Regular exercise is also said to help reduce pain for women with fibromyalgia, a type of musculoskeletal pain that becomes more common when you get older.

That being said, people are always looking for creative ways to make exercise fun — and that’s where group fitness classes come in. Taking a solo jog around the park or spending hours at the gym alone isn’t for everyone. So if you’ve been thinking about joining that yoga class downtown, there’s no reason to keep putting it off.

Providing Motivation

Even if you know all about the endless benefits of exercise, it’s not always easy to muster up the motivation to start. Luckily, enrolling yourself in a fitness class can provide all the drive you need. For example, it’s hard not to feel inspired once you join a Zumba class. The enthusiasm and energy in classes are very infectious.

Training with Certified Professionals

Certified trainers should always conduct fitness classes. These people know which goals you should be setting at your age, as well as the necessary steps you need to do in order to achieve them. Being part of the older demographic also opens you up to a wider range of risks and injuries, even if you think you’ve got enough confidence to power through. Therefore, having a trained professional can help you avoid most of them, and it’s often cheaper than hiring them privately.

Meeting New People

As you get older, it might be more challenging to make new friends. After all, not everyone enjoys going out on Friday nights nor has the energy to mingle with strangers. But group fitness classes pose a great opportunity to go out and meet like-minded people with the same lifestyle goals. In fact, a study on Bustle shows how group sessions can lead to unique bonds formed by being “challenged” together. True enough, sociology professors from Maryville University emphasize the importance of building connections as human beings. You are never too old to expand your network and meet new people because these links are what make human experiences more worthwhile. In this case, the act of exercising is made all the more fun.

Diversifying Workouts

You might think that walking is enough when you’re older, but you should at least try to sweat a little more than that. According to Dr. Chad McCann, walking alone doesn’t get your heart pumping enough to create “true cardiovascular improvement.” Instead, he shares that everyone (especially those over the age of 50) should be working on their strength and flexibility, on top of cardio. Luckily, no two fitness classes are exactly the same—bringing you some much-needed diversity to your workout.

Age really is just a number. You could be 55 but look 40 or, you might even be 50, but look and feel like 60. It all has to do with how well you care for your body and the kind of people that you surround yourself with.

Article written by Polly Hansen
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