What messes up people's joints is excess weight, not running. Runners have just as good joint health as active people their age who don't run.
That said, take it really, REALLY slow. It's not the joints so much, it's the soft tissue, the tendons and the ligaments and the muscles and all that. That and bone density. Your cardiovascular system will adjust to the higher intensity exercise much more quickly than the rest of you can, and you really don't want a nagging soft tissue injury like I've been dealing with for the better part of a year. :(
If you do strength training, see if you can focus on lower legs and feet; that'll help. Have fun!
You've already had the most important advice--GOOD shoes and a slow developing program.
Your other point, that you've kept the same exercise/food routine but aren't losing any more weight--maybe BECAUSE you haven't changed things out. Our bodies adapt (sometimes too well) to routine. Trying a totally different cardio--swimming or biking, for instance--could stir things up.
Also, especially at our age (I'm pushing 60) strength training is probably more important for overall health than cardio. We tend to lose muscle mass as we age, (I don't have the figures, but they are easy to find on this site or a medical one) so without a good strength routine, we are setting ourselves up for problems. Walking/running is great for helping maintain bone health, but you definitely want to add bands, weights or machines for a more complete health program (and if you already are, forgive me; it wasn't in your post).
Every moment is unique, unknown, completely fresh. ~~ Pema Chodron
I wanted to add that I agree with others that you are definitely not too old to run, but it would be a good idea to do a program like Couch to 5k that will increase your running gradually and safely.
Also, because running is much harder on the body than walking, you should not be running every day. Especially in the beginning (for at least the first six months to a year), you should allow at least one rest day after each running day, so no more than three running days per week.
Fitness Minutes: (216,315)
1/22/14 10:08 A
If you are in reasonably good health and haven't had any issues with arthritis or joint problems, there should be no reason you can't start running. I will say this speaking as a person getting up their in age, running IS very hard on a person's body.
It's true that there are many older people who run. I know the two examples that Zorbie posted. BUT you have to keep in mind those people had been runners for many many years. If you're just starting, you need to start slowly and you will find you need to take longer recovery periods.
I've found this true in my case even though I'm a little younger than you. In general, I am in better shape now than I was in my teens. BUT, age and injuries have taken their toll. I do need more recovery time after longer runs. So, do be careful.
I'm going to recommend a couple of things to do. First, if you really want to run, get fitted for a proper pair of shoes. Don't wear any old shoe. your feet will need good support. Go to a reputable running or sports store to get fitted. Wearing the wrong shoes or improperly fitting shoes will cause problems for your feet, ankles, knees and joints.
Once you have been fitted, try a Couch to 5K problem Spark People has one. it also has a Spark team too. A couch to 5K assumes no prior running experience and will literally take you from your couch to a 5K road race. Follow the schedule. If you need more time on some weeks, you stay longer at those weeks.
As I mentioned earlier, while there are many competent older runners, running does take a toll. We're not kids any more. We have to treat our bodies with respect.
As my yoga instructor likes to say,"Don't abuse"
Fitness Minutes: (2,386)
58 1/22/14 6:09 A
Thanks, Kris for your insight. I really don't go any less than 4mph simply because I don't want to use more than 45 min of the day just walking. I do it every day 7 days a week. The odd thing is that I do that and only 1200 calories and am struggling to take off pounds. I only need 10 lbs gone and that may seem like nothing to be upset about but I've made fitness my lifestyle since a young girl so 10 lbs is huge to me. Your suggestion about the Dr. is good but I only go a couple of years and I would imagine that their advice would include a bone density test which is very expensive....so ....I guess the best thing is to stay with a brisk walk. Thanks for your comment.
current weight: 140.0
Fitness Minutes: (33,526)
22,037 1/21/14 10:30 P
I would imagine that if you wear good, support footwear and do it with proper form, then you would probably be o.k., but this is something that I would be inclined to run past my Dr. He/she will have your medical history.
As another option, because it is a good cardiovascular work-out you want, you can get plenty even by doing some chair exercises. IT takes the pressure off the joints. There is certainly nothing wrong with a brisk walk, tho'! I don't run any more because I have arthritis of the spine and scoliosis, and they can be very painful and exacerbate the problem if I don't avoid some forms of exercise, but walking I can manage. I listen to my body.
BTW - 4mph isn't to be sneezed at! I can manage 4 K's /hr but only in very short bursts. it is enough to elevate my heart rate. My Physiotherapist never wanted me to do any more than 3.5kph.
Hi everyone, I'm a 61 year old very active lady and this last week I've decided instead of just walking 3 miles (which takes me 45 minutes at 4mph) I would try walking 15 seconds then running for the other 45 seconds at 6 mph. I seem to be tolerating it pretty well but have never had a bone density test done so I'm wondering if the impact on the body is worth the time saved. I console myself with the fact that it's much more cardio then my 4 mph and that's got to be great for my heart. Does anyone run at this age? How do you feel about the impact? One other thing that may or may not make the difference...I'm doing it on a treadmill. Thank you
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