Suggestions for helping my parents get fit in their 60s through exercise?

  • Hello all,

    I am writing not for myself, but for my parents. While I consider myself to be somewhat fit myself (I try to work out at least a couple of times a week with cardio and weights, and eat healthy when I can), I do not know exactly what advice to give my older parents. I have noticed their health and mobility declining over the last decade, and I want to do all that I can to help them stay in the best shape that they can to help offset health issues.

    While neither of my parents are severely over weight, they both need to lose weight to get to a healthy size. They have poor eating habits. Although they both have high blood pressure (my father has even had to have stints placed in his heart due to blockages), they still continue to have poor eating habits (fried food, lack of balanced meals, etc). They both have high blood pressure and must be on medication. My mother has had recent issues with high pulse rates that have sent her to the ER out of fear.

    I am looking for a way to help my parents get into shape through exercise, and I thought this may be a good place to start. My parents try to go on walks when they can, but my father had knee replacement about 3 years ago and this makes it difficult for him. He needs something low impact. I was considering getting them an elliptical machine for christmas to help them slowly get back into shape...

    My question is, would the elliptical be a good choice to help their health issues? Consider their problems with high bloodpressure, would this be dangerous, or beneficial?

    If someone that knows a little more on the subject of exercising at an older age, then I would greatly appreciate any feedback. Thank you for reading.

  • Sadly your parents need to come to a decision themselves on lifestyle changes, you'd think the health scares would have been enough. The elliptical is a great idea but will they use it? Maybe a heart to heart with them as to how you feel about them and their well being.
  • Totally agree with Robin.
  • Mark, Do you live near them? If exercise and diet is something that is important to you and you want them to see the same, perhaps going over there once or twice a week and cooking them dinner with enough for a night of leftovers and then going out and doing an activity, even a simple game of badminton can be exercise disguised as fun. Or a nice walk, stroll... just getting out of the house and DOING can be good for the mental health of folks who are in a mindset slump. Mall walking is good too, plus in Malls there are adequate "rest stops" usually every 3 or 4 stores there is a bench of some variety, if dad needs to sit a bit, ma can go another lap and pick him back up on her next go-round.


cardio, exercise, exercise advice