by Morgan Montalvo
An Austin geriatric specialist is urging seniors to make 2019 their year for improved wellness, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
Dr. Liam Fry with UT-Austin's Dell Medical School recommends that elders look past barriers that discourage starting an exercise program - cold weather or lack of a workout partner, for example - and get active, outdoors or indoors.
"Even if it's with your walker, or your cane," Fry says, "anything to keep moving more is helpful. It doesn't need to be dramatic. It just needs to be consistent."
Fry says, as with younger people, seniors should avoid setting unrealistic goals and focus on what's doable on a day-to-day basis.
"For an older adult, really just walking more, taking a few more steps. If you're already walking, doing a second walk a day or, if you're walking two times a week,walk three times a week," Fry says.
Studies, Fry says, confirm a benefit of exercise called the "training effect," increased muscle mass and improved cognitive function, among active people well into their 90s.
She says based upon age alone, there's no point in time that a person cannot benefit from increased physical activity.
Fry also suggests consulting a doctor before starting any prolonged exercise regimen.