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New Fitness Trends for Baby Boomers

My Boomer Living, Jan 2012

I am so delighted with all of the new fitness ideas surfacing these days. From Nia to Zumba to Wii-Fit and Cardio Cinema – innovative ideas just keep on coming! Many of the new crazes involve dance, and as a former dancer myself, I’m thrilled to see these rise in popularity. Zumba is a combination of fitness and Latin dance moves that has really taken off – especially with Baby Boomers. Nia is similar but combines Latin dance with tai chi and yoga for a wonderful and fun work-out. This fall, I am offering Nia classes at my Healthy Boomer Body Center.

The importance of these fitness trends is that they are fun. Many people have spent years avoiding their fitness programs, using a variety of excuses, like not enough time, gym membership is costly, overworked and exhausted, and the list goes on. Research has proven, however, that when something is fun, we humans are more apt to make the time for it. And the popularity of shows like Dancing With The Stars shows that many of us love to dance. Richard Simmons made a career out of “Sweatin’ to the Oldies.”

I have always recommended looking back to childhood to find something physical that you loved to do like biking, swimming, hiking, dancing, and then add it into your life again, a little at a time, so that you enjoy life more and keep fit and healthy at the same time. Many Boomers who are taking dance classes like Zumba and Nia report having lost weight, lowered their blood pressure and cholesterol, and they all say they feel fantastic

Don’t be fooled by those who say you need to spend 60 minutes a day in the gym, or 30 minutes of cardio and another 30 of weight training. Each of our bodies is different and the same program that works great for me may not work as well for you and vice-versa. Any exercise that you do is valuable. The best way to make a permanent change is to take one small step at a time. The clients that I’ve coached have all made tremendous progress over the long term with small, simple steps that don’t make you feel deprived, or under any time constraints. And we’ve incorporated things that each find fun or joyful into our daily routines. That can be anything from dancing, walking the dog, horseback riding, or even Hula Hooping with Michele Obama!

We Boomers are changing the old paradigms of aging as we go and I see this resurgence of dancing for fitness as another great health and fitness innovation that we will leave for future generations. We are doing what we love to do and feel passionate about in all areas of our lives: Health, Career, Relationships, Financial, Personal Development, and now we are re-defining Retirement. Can you think of a better legacy to leave our children and grandchildren than the idea that when we all do what we love for a living and for fun, the world is a happier, healthier place?

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