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Hitting a birthday milestone puts a lot of things in perspective.  Years of inactivity and being sedentary can take their toll.  Here’s the good news:  Even if you’ve never been physically active, becoming fit isn’t that difficult, and after 50 is a great time to start!

Getting in shape after 50

Exercise is one of the best ways to manage some of the unpleasant symptoms of menopause like hot flashes, insomnia and lack of energy.  It is also a great way to rev up your metabolism which naturally slows down as you age.  Physical activity also lowers your risk for a plethora of diseases such as heart disease, osteoporosis, diabetes and some forms of cancer.

Being fit in your 50s and 60s means fewer chronic conditions and diseases later in life.

A study that examined midlife fitness and chronic disease outcomes in later life showed that higher fitness levels were associated with lower incidence of chronic conditions suggesting that exercise may be associated with lower rates of morbidity in older age.  In the study, participants who were the least fit in their 40s and 50s developed the most chronic conditions early in the aging process, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s, COPD, kidney disease, and lung or colon cancer.

Exercising is not just about weight loss and attaining a certain size during your 50s and beyond. 

It’s about staying healthy, remaining independent and enjoying life just as you have for the last few decades.

Fitness has always been part of my life.  In my 20s and early 30s, I was a fitness instructor, personal trainer and avid biker.  I learned how to play tennis in my 40s, and when I turned 50, I added interval training to my fitness routine by taking some kick-butt classes at Orange Theory.  In addition to my Orange Theory classes, I continue to play tennis regularly and enjoy a few four to five miles walks per week. My 50s haven’t slowed me down a bit!

With a little creativity, you can easily start an exercise routine after 50.

Here are a few useful and fun things to get you started: (aff):

Make every beat count with Fitbit Charge 2—the all-new heart rate and fitness wristband built for all-day, workouts and beyond. PurePulse continuous heart rate makes it easy to maximize workouts, better track calorie burn and get a snapshot of your cardio fitness level, while all-day activity and auto sleep tracking, lets you see how your whole routine adds up. Record your workouts with multi-sport modes to see real-time workout stats on screen, or rely on SmartTrack to automatically record select exercises for you.

A great insulated water bottle perfect for your workouts.  Made of stainless steel body which is double-walled and vacuum sealed. BPA free, Non toxic, Non leaching, phthalate free. Anti scratch guard double coated paint finish, will keep your bottle looking new for a very long time.

Kettlebells are great for varying up your strength workouts.  The SPRI Kettlebells have handles designed for comfort and fully vinyl coated iron bells to help protect floors. Ideal tool for both personal and group training.  A great workout tool for working multiple muscles for a total-body workout.

Getting into yoga? Durable and chic, Gaiam’s Print Premium Reversible Yoga Mats provide a stable, sticky non-slip surface for your yoga practice. Perfect for home or studio use, this mat ensures the safety and comfort you need to enhance proper alignment and maintain poses.

The Simply Fit board has been a hit since its debut on Shark Tank. It’s a great piece of equipment to strenghten and tone your core and legs. Includes a workout DVD and user guide.

I have a pair of these Skullcandy Hesh 2 Bluetooth Wireless Headphones and love them.  I also bought a pair for my husband and he loves them, too. Great sound.  Long battery life. Very comfortable.  I use them for listening to music and my favorite podcasts during my long morning walks.

A great planner that will help you reach your fitness goals.  Includes an undated 12-month mini planner filled with creative and inspirational artwork along with a pre-punched mini sticky notes page contains 7 different sticky note pads with 20 self-adhesive notes per design.  Cute!

A terrific lightweight and durable waist belt that can be used for running, hiking, cycling and other outdoor activities.  Has a reflective stripe designed for night safety.  Provides protection for your phones, cash, keys or watch.  It is big enough to hold your gear and perfect for Apple iPhone 5, 5S, 5C, 6, 6 plus, 6S, 6S plus, BlackBerry, Google Nexus 4, 5, Huawei Ascend, LG Optimus, Motorola MOTO, Nokia Lumia, Samsung Galaxy Note, Samsung Galaxy, Sony Xperia, Windows Phone,even with very bulky cases.

Versatile and functional, this athletic sport bag is perfect for the avid gym goer with plenty of room to fit all the essentials for a productive workout.  The bag comes with a VENTILATED pocket for your laundry, wet towel or shoes to keep you clothes dry and fresh while minimizing odor. Also comes with multiple zipped pockets for organization and easy access.

Ultima Replenisher is part of my daily hydration routine. Electrolyte Powder Stickpacks makes is super easy to stay hydrated and balance your electrolytes after heavy workouts. Sweetened with Stevia, they make a great sugar-free alternative to other electrolyte drinks. Just pour a stickpack in your water and you’re done!  Lemonade is my favorite flavor.

Before beginning an exercise program, please consult your healthcare provider.  Enjoy!