Lifetime Fitness Activities
Finding exercises and sports you can enjoy throughout your life may require you to take on new activities at different times of your life. Lifetime fitness activities include things you can do alone or in groups while getting your heart rate up. These types of exercise activities should also be low-impact and not overly weight bearing, to minimize injury as you age. You need a total of 150 minutes of moderate activity per week, which amounts to 30 minutes of moderate activity five days per week, explains the American College of Sports Medicine.
You can walk anywhere, at any stage in your life. It doesn't cost anything, and the only piece of equipment you need is a good pair of walking shoes. Walking burns calories and improves flexibility in your legs and hips. Walking a brisk pace of 3.5 miles in an hour burns over 300 calories if you weigh 160 pounds. At a weight of 125 pounds, walking 3.5 miles in an hour buns approximately 240 calories.
Golfing is a low-impact fitness activity you can do at any point in your life. If you weigh 160 pounds, carry your clubs and walk the entire course, you burn about 315 calories per hour playing golf. At 125 pounds, you'll burn roughly 230 calories per hour. During your golden years, if you have trouble walking long distances, use a golf cart to lug around your clubs, rather than carrying them and walking the course. You won't burn as many calories, but you'll still get lots of physical activity swinging on the putting green. Golfing with a cart burns 260 calories in an hour, at a weight of 160 pounds, or 210 calories if you weigh 120 pounds.
Tennis is a great way for you and your partner to stay in shape. Involve the whole family by playing a doubles match with a couple of your grandchildren. Many apartment complexes, gyms and senior living facilities provide tennis courts. All you need is a racket, tennis balls, a partner and a supportive pair of shoes. In a 30-minute singles match, you expend nearly 300 calories, at a weight of 160 pounds. If you weigh closer to 125 pounds, you'll burn around 210 calories in a 30-minute singles match.
Bowling is an enjoyable activity at any age and is another way to stay in shape. Whether you join a league or gather the family several times a week for bowling nights, you'll get your heart rate up. If you weigh around 160 pounds, you burn more than 200 calories in a one-hour bowling match, or 180 calories at a weight of 125 pounds. Bowling can be strenuous on your body, since you have to lift a heavy ball. If the ball is too heavy to lift, many bowling alleys provide a bowling ball ramp. All you have to do is position the ramp in the direction you want the ball to go, have someone place the ball at the top and push the ball down the ramp.
Swimming is low-impact, so you won't have to worry about aggravating or damaging your joints as you age. Go swimming at the local public pool and swim laps or join a water aerobics class. Swimming laps burns over 210 calories in a 30-minute session, if you weigh 160 pounds, or 180 calories at a weight of 125 pounds. Taking a one-hour water aerobics class burns more than 400 calories, at a weight of 160 pounds, or 240 calories if you weigh closer to 125 pounds. Either way, water activities not only increase your heart rate, they also help tone muscles.
- MayoClinic.com: Exercise for Weight Loss: Calories Burned in 1 Hour
- The President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports: Physical Activity and Fitness
- American College of Sports Medicine: ACSM, AHA Support Federal Physical Activity Guidelines
- Harvard Medical School: Calories Burned in 30 Minutes for People of Three Different Weights
Melodie Anne Coffman specializes in overall wellness, with particular interests in women's health and personal defense. She holds a master's degree in food science and human nutrition and is a certified instructor through the NRA. Coffman is pursuing her personal trainer certification in 2015.