Medical Fitness 

by Shirley Brown, MiCafe Community Partner Engagement Specialist

No matter your age, if you are considering adding exercise to your daily routine, recognize the safe ways of be more active. First, speak with your doctor about the exercises and physical activities that you are planning. Even if you do or do not have a health condition, your doctor can help you choose exercises that are right for you. If you have a specific health issue that you are concerned about, ask your doctor for some tips to help you exercise safely. Your doctor can make recommendations based on your health history, keeping in mind any recent surgeries or ongoing health conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, or heart disease. Some questions that should be addressed are: (1) What activities should I avoid; (2) How does my health condition affect my exercise ability; (3) Are there any tests that I might need?

Even if you have a health condition, there are exercises you can do that offer great health benefits. Real life benefits of exercise and physical activity are; endurance, strength, balance and flexibility. Activities, like raking your lawn, lifting and playing with grandchildren, taking a walk, vacuuming and mopping floors; are all forms of physical activity that you do not want to lose.

If something doesn’t feel right or hurts, seek medical advice right away.  Talk with your medical doctor and your eye doctor, since bending, lifting, or rapid movement can affect some medical and eye conditions. A fitness instructor at a local gym or community center can help you create an effective fitness program designed just for you. you may want to talk with your healthcare provider if you aren’t used to energetic activity and you want to start a vigorous exercise program or significantly increase your physical activity.

It is essential to set goals, track your progress, adhere to tips from your doctor, and celebrate your success. Staying safe while you exercise is always important, whether you’re just starting a new activity or you haven’t been active for a long time. Most important of all is to have fun.

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