I am now 53 years old but fortunately most of the time I don't feel old (as long as I avoid mirrors).  However I do feel the aches and pains of physical activity more than ever and I do feel that pull to sit down and 'rest' more.


This last weekend Energize entered a charity football tournament supporting our friends at A Better Tomorrow in Telford who do great work supporting people suffering from drug, alcohol and substance misuse addictions.  Of course I played and inevitably, as I haven't played football competitively probably for ten years, my body was full of aches and pains for the rest of the weekend (and more).  I'm due to play in what is now an annual Vets Rugby festival in a couple of weeks - which I know will end in similar aches and pains.  I've been playing sport like this for probably 20 years now - exercising regularly by mostly jogging or cycling and then trying to do things I did when I was younger occasionally.  However I feel the time is fast approaching when it will no longer be sensible to play.  Some sports / activities have the potential to do more damage than good as you get older. 


It would be easy to retire gracefully and adopt a more sedentary and perhaps supportive pose - mostly on the settee!  To think I've done my time in various sports and clubs and to retire gracefully.....  


I guess there are three main reasons why I don't want to do this;


  1. I still get a great deal of pleasure from socialising with others in an active environment - I do particularly like the social element of team games and there are opportunities to try some different ones - recently I've started to play Cricket again.
  2. Being physically active does make me feel healthier - knowing I am physically able to perform daily activities - e.g. Undertaking household tasks and Taking our dog for a walk is important to me.
  3. Being physically active significantly contributes to my mental wellbeing and mood - I definitely feel more positive, alive and optimistic following bouts of physical activity


But anyone who is a little bit older will know that it's not so easy to find activities that you enjoy and are suitable for you as you get older.


Here's some thoughts from me;


  1. Work out your motivations and what you enjoy - quite often I find the social side is as important as the activity - doing something active with friends is likely to stick for longer than just for the activities sake
  2. There are also lots of ways to motivate yourself by helping others / giving something back and taking part in charitable activities - if you're interested in being supported by Energize (whilst also supporting our work) - follow this link to our Fundraising Pages
  3. Running / jogging is a very popular activity and there a lots of starter running groups and activities. Park Run on a Saturday morning is a very nice easy and friendly activity and if you don’t feel like you can do the 5k straight away you could download to Couch 2 5k app on your phone which offers a supportive step by step programme to get there in 3 months.  Thousands of people who couldn’t run down the street have used it and achieved success.
  4. Another way is to try to incorporate activity into your regular life - for example walking to the corner shop rather than jumping in the car - my wife and I have found that cycling to a coffee shop on a weekend morning is a nice way to start the day. We also love walking the dog in the Shropshire Hills - after all we do live in one of the most beautiful areas of the country.  
  5. New activities are also being set up all the time to cater for older participants - e.g. rusty racquets, no strings badminton, Touch Rugby, and walking Football and Netball now has groups all over the County.
  6. We do know that there isn't enough on offer for older people in our County and maybe if there isn't something in your area you and your friends might interested in getting it started? Contact [email protected] we are sure to be able to help you get started with practical advice / support.


Don't set your sights too high - celebrate every little bit of progress - remember every journey starts with one step and have fun.