Four Fitness Tips to Get and Stay in Shape

Healthy lifestyles require commitment and consistency to programs we already know are good for us.


The Boomerater™ Report, our weekly collaboration with online baby boomer resource Boomerater, this week has some tips for those of you who want to start going to gym but don’t know what fitness program to pursue.

Question: I am mid-50s and want to start going to gym but don't want to over strain myself. What are the tips for someone getting started on this regime for the first time? Do your homework. Check out the gym you are considering. See who their target clients are. See if they offer initial training with staff experienced in boomer-aging concerns. Take some lessons and most of all, listen to your body as to what feels right during/after the workout. Your body will know better than the trainer if some activities aren't right for you personally. Good luck! It 's the best insurance policy we can write for ourselves.

[See 4 Tips for Investing in Your Physical Wealth]

Seek our things that keep you coming back. I am suffering from arthritic knees but was determined to get moving again. I found a wonderful 'basic' exercise regimen close to home, but what really keeps me going back is the music! Beach Boys and the Shirells make the experience of exercise dramatically different than counting reps! Anyway, I'm sure that the most important aspect of exercise is not what you choose, but that you keep going back. I unabashedly admit that it is not the exercise, but the music! Good luck.

Get a personal trainer. For those of you starting a new fitness regimen, better late than never! If you haven't been to a gym in a long time (or ever), it is worth your time and effort to work with a professional trainer. We all have friends that can show us a couple of exercises. But if you are interested in having a balanced program that suits your individual needs, one-on-one training is essential.

A few tips on finding a trainer are as follows: 1. Find the busier trainers. They are usually more sought-after for a reason.

2. Fit trainers exercise themselves regularly. They are usually more effective than an out-of-shape trainer.
3. They are certified, motivating, creative, focused and punctual.
4. They suit your individual needs and personality. It’s called "personal training" for a reason. Once you have found your trainer, you have an obligation to be honest about your diet and lifestyle. Are you drinking/eating excessively? Are you doing cardio several times a week? Are you taking medications?

Healthy diet. Healthful grains, fruit, eggs, and yogurt are a great way to start the day. ALWAYS eat a good breakfast! This will help you eat well the rest of the day and reach your ideal weight. Also eat chicken, fish, beans, vegetables, salads and lots of water. Come on, we all know what's good for us by now! Beware of sports drinks, supplements (unless supervised by your doctor), and fad diets. A well balanced meal, lots of water, exercise and rest go a long way. Consistency is key and when you are new to anything, practice makes perfect. This is something you will do the rest of your life. The sooner you start doing it correctly, the sooner you will reap the wonderful benefits.

[See also Note to Brain: Get Down and Give Me 50!]

Boomerater is an online resource for baby boomers, with directories to help you find everything from a Boston financial advisor to California nursing homes. The site also contains forums where boomers can post questions and swap first-hand experiences. If there are questions on your mind that you would like answered by people who have faced similar situations, or you have advice of your own to share, go to and participate in the forums. Say that The Best Life sent you.