SEATTLE — At the beginning of the new year, many people are looking to establish an exercise routine that will help them get and stay in shape. Everyone has different fitness needs, and different exercises that work for them, and Premera Blue Cross is encouraging everyone to take the steps to find their perfect workout routine. Penny Bailey, Senior Manager of Education and Training at Premera’s healthcare partner American Specialty Health (ASH), talked about the different options for getting fit this year.
The Silver & Fit Program
There are easy ways for you to get started on your fitness journey either in the gym or at home with the Silver & Fit program.
Silver & Fit members get access to fitness facilities or the Home Fitness program where they can choose from a number of different exercise kits that come with the materials you’ll need to exercise at home. Choices vary from yoga kits, walking kits, aquatic exercise kits, and tai chi kits among others.
“The Silver & Fit program is all about having options,” Bailey said. “We want people to move so they can feel better and have more vitality, so as they age they can continue to do those activities they love to do, like playing with their grandchildren, or dancing, or golfing.”
Members of the Silver & Fit program can also visit fitness centers to take classes, work out at different levels of intensity, and meet people who are also working to get healthy.
“You can really enhance that social dimension of wellness,” Bailey said.
For those who don’t want to make the trip to the gym, it’s possible to get fit in the comfort of your own home with an exercise kit or inexpensive materials you can buy on your own. The most important thing is to get moving, no matter where.
As people age the level of fitness they may be aiming for has more to do with retaining the necessary muscles to go about everyday activities instead of body-building or marathon running.
“Whether it’s five minutes, ten minutes, twenty minutes, we need to move for our health and to maintain function,” Bailey said.
Exercising at home with Resistance Bands
For those planning to work out at home, Bailey recommends using resistance bands. Resistance bands are light-weight, inexpensive and easy to store or travel with. Silver & Fit uses resistance bands in their facilities and in their fitness kits.
There are many simple and effective exercises you can do with a resistance band that will help you stay in shape. Watch the video demonstration for examples of exercises you can perform with resistance bands.
A resistance band is the right amount of resistance for you when you can feel your muscles working without pain. The amount of repetitions a person should do is dependent on their fitness level. It’s best to consult a fitness professional when deciding how many repetitions to incorporate into your routine.
Some resistance bands come with handles which allow for additional exercises that can work out your arms and core.