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Making Fitness Count at Every Age Seniors Should Adjust, Not Abandon, Their Fitness Regimens.

Jacksonville, FL, September 09, 2011 -- When it comes to exercise, old habits di e hard, but what worked 20 or 30 years ago may no longer be appropriate. Our bo dies change and our tolerance for certain types of exercise changes. That can d iscourage some seniors to the point where they give up exercise altogether. Blu e Cross Blue Shield of Florida encourages Floridians of all ages to adjust, not abandon, their fitness regimens so they can continue to enjoy the many benefits of exercise while minimizing risk for injury. And for those who have not exerci sed before, it s never too late to start. According to Carmella Sebastian, MD, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida s Senior Medical Director of Clinical Client Solutions, exercises once recommended by you r gym teacher or coach may no longer be the best choice at later stages of life, and could lead to increased risk of injury. But by adjusting your routine, or f inally getting started on an appropriate exercise schedule, the benefits of exer cise can be ageless. Dr. Sebastian, who is Medical Director Lead for the wellness program Better You From Blue, and a certified wellness counselor, concurs with these tips from the Senior Health section of the National Institutes of Health website. Be active every day to maintain health, whether through physical activity or reg ular exercise. Find activities you enjoy, and those that you can fit into your daily life. Swi mming, gardening and walking are a few examples, or if you prefer companionship, consider tennis or dancing. Some enjoy going to a gym or working with a fitnes s trainer for motivation. Consider adding variety into your activity routine. Try to choose activities tha t include all four types of exercise -- endurance, strength, flexibility, and ba lance -- because each type has different benefits. Here are some examples: For endurance: Brisk walking, dancing, aerobics classes, jogging, biking, swimm ing or other water exercises. For strength: Weight lifting, resistance bands, Pilates, Tai Chi, For balance: heel-to-toe walking, standing on one foot, Tai Chi For flexibility: shoulder and upper arm stretches, calf stretches, yoga Talk First with Your Physician Dr. Sebastian advises all seniors to check in with their physicians first before beginning or changing an exercise regimen. Discuss any health conditions you m ay have, including recent hip or back surgery, or chronic conditions such as dia betes, heart disease, or arthritis. Review current medications with your doctor. Doctors rarely tell people not to exercise, but they may have certain safety ti ps for those who have these conditions. Other Sources for Healthy Inspiration During the month of September, Florida Blue retail centers in Miami, Fort Lauder dale, Tampa, Orlando and Jacksonville are celebrating Senior Wellness Month with free Senior Wellness Health Seminars. For a Florida Blue events calendar, visi t

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida: In Pursuit of Health Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida is a leader in Florida s health industry, dedi cated to providing progressive health solutions to support all Floridians in the ir pursuit of health. Through wellness education, personal interaction and guidanc e, community involvement and a variety of cost-conscious health coverage options , we strive to promote health and well-being throughout the state of Florida. Our Florida Blue centers provide an interactive environment where consumers can purc hase health insurance, have face-to-face consultations, take advantage of basic health screenings and wellness lectures, and learn about various health care opt ions fit for any budget. Learn more at Since 1944, the company has worked to meet the diverse needs of all those it ser ves by offering an array of choices. BCBSF is a not-for-profit, policyholder-own ed, tax-paying mutual company. Headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., BCBSF is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, an associati on of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies. For more information con cerning BCBSF, please see its Web site at . Contact : Shawn Warmstein Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida, Inc Jacksonville, FL 305-444-3383