We try to maintain great fitness habits throughout our lives. But someday, the time comes when our bodies give out on us. Our joints ache. Actions that used to be commonplace, everyday activities — like going for a stroll, carrying bags of groceries or walking up the stairs — suddenly become painful. As time goes by, and our condition gets worse, these daily activities become next-to-impossible.
Maintaining your fitness levels can postpone this, but nothing can guarantee that you’ll always have the same mobility and independence that you enjoy today.
Perhaps you’re dealing with these issues yourself. Or perhaps you have a parent or grandparent who is dealing with these issues. What can you do? Here are a few pointers:
#1: Arrange Your Home in a Way That’s Easy-to-Get-Around
Sleep in a spare bedroom on the ground floor so that you don’t have to walk up the stairs. Sign up for a grocery-delivery service so you can get fresh fruits, veggies, bread and milk delivered to your front door. Order products — even simple products like toothpaste — from Amazon or other online retailers so that you don’t need to deal with the hassle of a shopping trip.
#2: Don’t Be Shy About Using Helpful Technology
Don’t be shy or embarrassed about walking with a cane, a walker or using a wheelchair. Technology and equipment like this will relieve the pressure from your joints. If it makes you feel frumpy, do something to perk yourself up, like getting your hair or nails done or wearing a great outfit.
#3: Be Social!
Make friends who are in the same situation as you — being connected to people undergoing a similar experience will help you get through it. Join a sports league for seniors or for people in wheelchairs. Fitness and activity boosts happiness levels.
#4: Comparison Shop
Mobility products can be expensive. Compare prices. Collect quotes from several contractors if you’re going to build a wheelchair ramp. A few hours of comparison-shopping can save you hundreds or thousands of dollars.