Warmer temperatures, more hours of daylight and plenty of local events are just a few of the reasons spring is a great season for seniors to improve their health.
Individuals who struggled to keep a New Year's resolution to walk each day may find it easier to succeed by choosing routes through Collinwood's budding gardens and trails, and others who are determined to improve their diet may find motivation to eat healthier by visiting a local farmer's market and sampling its fresh, seasonal offerings.
To help seniors take stock of their personal habits and surroundings and get started on their journey of self-improvement, here is a checklist of seven easy ways to stay healthy this spring.
The benefits of walking are well-known, but transforming daily strolls into times of prayer can bestow even greater rewards. By praying or meditating as they exercise, seniors can deepen their relationship with God, lower their stress levels and organize their thoughts — all of which can help them live life more fully once they finish their course.
The mountain views from the community deck make a delightful backdrop to an afternoon of exploring a new novel or completing a crossword puzzle. The fresh air and sounds of nature can also boost relaxation and help seniors recharge. To ensure this time remains enjoyable, seniors should grab a sweater before heading out if the wind is cool and apply sunscreen according to the instructions to ward off potential sunburns.
Getting the right amount and the right kind of sleep can improve every other area of a senior's health. A few ways that they can safeguard their sleep are to examine their mattress and pillows for deterioration and to consider adding allergy encasements to ward off the effects of dust mites.
Another good place for seniors to consider doing some spring cleaning is their medicine cabinet and kitchen. It can be easy to forget the shelf life of over-the-counter medications that aren't used very often, such as cough suppressants or antibiotic ointments, and used lotion jars or makeup containers should be replaced regularly to prevent the buildup of bacteria. Nuts, candy, seasonings, condiments and tea bags are also good items to inspect for signs of age.
A simple way to improve health is to make a habit of reading food labels. New regulations have helped make them more user-friendly in recent years. If seniors aren't certain how to apply the information to themselves or don't understand a term, they can research it on the internet or ask their caregivers for assistance.
The wellness programs in Collinwood's monthly calendar make it easy to track opportunities for exercise and socialization. Though it's natural for seniors focused on improving health to place a high priority on physical activities and shy away from ice cream socials and movie nights, participating in a variety of events can provide stress relief, companionship and a more positive mood, leading to better overall health in the long run.
The Fort Collins official page is a great resource for locating area activities that engage seniors both mentally and physically such as bird-watching, fishing, golfing, attending a live concert or taking a stroll to discover the unique pavers and painted pianos located around town.