For the Young at Heart – The Joy of Aging

Leslie and her student’s getting some great exercise at the GranVida Senior Living Memory Care in Carpentaria.

by Leslie Sokol

It can be argued that age is really just a state of mind. With a positive attitude, love of life, and confidence, you can accomplish anything, no matter how old you are! Feeling good and being joyful from the inside out is so important. Sound mind, sound body. Starting your day in a healthy and happy way by moving your body, adopting a positive attitude, and focusing on good nutrition is the way to go! Exercise is a natural medicine to move emotions through you. The body was made to move!

It can be challenging to set up a regular exercise routine. Start small and build on it each day, one day at a time. A lot of people ask me what form of exercise is best and I say the one you enjoy the most! Perhaps you like to take walks, garden, swim, hike, play golf, lift weights, dance, practice yoga, stretch – whatever it is, try to set up a daily schedule and prioritize it. Doing a variety of exercises such as cross training is also a good idea. It works the muscles in different ways and gives you a variety of workouts while utilizing the whole body. Total fitness improves performance, prevents injury and is more enjoyable. Having fun and bringing joy to your workouts is most beneficial.

For many people, exercising feels like a chore, too much work or just plain boring. When we approach exercise with a negative mindset, it can feel like punishment and it’s definitely not fun. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be this way. I encourage you to explore a joyful movement mentality and learn how to exercise in a way that benefits your mind, body, and soul. Joyful movement means moving your body in ways that feel good to you in the moment. Some days you might want to take a leisurely walk while other days you might want to participate in a group dance class. What feels joyful and fun now may be different than what your body preferred years ago and that’s ok. Your preferences change over time, in the same way that your body changes – discover what is new about yourself and celebrate those changes with a joyful mindset!

Age is just a number so don’t allow your age to set your limitations! Make the most of life’s moments. Live in the present, enjoy your surroundings, be social and active in your community, be joyful, and appreciative of the life you live!

Did you know that over 70% of your body is made up of water? As the weather gets warmer, you need to be aware of your daily fluid intake. You want to stay hydrated and not get dehydrated. I always suggest that you drink before, during and after you exercise. The more active you are, the more fluids you need. Water is one of the best fluids to drink while exercising.

Leslie Sokol is the creator and founder of the adult dance and fitness program For the Young at Heart. She has been teaching adults and children for forty-five years. You can watch For the Young at Heart by visiting her YouTube Channel or on TVSB. She also teaches in retirement communities throughout Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties.
For more information contact Leslie at [email protected] 805-312-8089
or visit the website:

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