If your senior’s doctor has recommended that she start exercising you might have been wondering how to convince her to give it a try. This doesn’t have to be super complicated for you or for your elderly family member. What you really need to do is to help her to see how much better exercise can help her to feel.
A Buddy Can Keep Her Motivated
Exercising alone can get lonely quickly. Having an exercise buddy can keep your senior motivated and it might make exercise fun enough for her that she wants to stick with it. If your senior doesn’t have an exercise buddy, then joining exercise classes might be a good idea. This is much more helpful if your elderly family member loves to be around other people and enjoys meeting new folks.
Goals Give Her Something to Aim For
Your elderly family member needs a target when she’s thinking about starting to exercise. Having a set of goals can be motivational for her, especially if she uses them properly. Good goals need to be easily measurable and they should be reasonably achievable. If the goals are too big, your senior might find them more frustrating than helpful and that can cause her to give up.
Keeping a Log of Progress Helps Her to See How Far She’s Come
Once your elderly family member has some goals and she’s started committing to exercise on a regular basis, it might be difficult for her to see her own progress at first. This is why keeping an exercise journal or log is so important. It allows her to see where she started and to track how she goes on from there. She may not feel like she’s accomplishing much, but when she looks back over her own notes, she’ll see that she’s made a lot more progress than she thought.
Don’t Make Exercise Feel Like Punishment
It’s really important that exercise doesn’t feel like a punishment for your senior. No one wants to keep exercising if it feels like something that isn’t fun at all. Look for activities that she’s always wanted to try or that she finds enjoyable. If you are able to do that, she’s going to be far more likely to stick with it and get even more benefits out of moving more.
Keeping up with everything that she needs to keep up with in order to stay healthy can feel complicated for your senior. Having help from elder care providers with things like meal preparation and transportation can help her to focus on doing what she needs to do.