As the days get shorter and temperatures drop, seniors may experience the ‘winter blues,’ especially if they aren’t as active as they were in the summer and fall. Staying emotionally and physically healthy during the winter months may be more challenging, but there are fun ways to keep spirits up.

For example, as a care manager I encourage seniors not to abandon their exercise routines just because it’s cold outside. Dress in layers, wear sunscreen and the proper footwear, and get fresh air and sunshine as much as possible. Besides being good for your physical health, exercise can also lift your mood. If you have someone to exercise with, so much the better. You can keep each other accountable. Besides outdoor exercise, consider indoor swimming, yoga, or exercise classes for seniors at your local YMCA or senior center.

Eating healthy, drinking plenty of water, getting enough sleep, and managing stress are also important. Many younger people use fitness tracking devices to measure their progress with exercise, food and water intake, and even stress levels. Seniors who are comfortable with apps can try using a FitBit or other device that measures their daily steps and can record how much water they drink, the quality of their sleep, heart rate, and more. Trackers can keep you motivated and even remind you to get up and move around if you’re sitting too much.

One of my clients, Jill, found that writing in a daily journal helped her to reflect on her thoughts and feelings and stay organized. A daily journal can be used to record and track your goals, fitness, food, to-do list, events, or experiences. Some people use a journal to write daily positive affirmations and things they’re grateful for. It can be as simple as a writing in a notebook, using a system like Bullet Journal, or using a diary or journal app for your phone, tablet, or computer.

There’s no right or wrong way to start keeping a journal, but it can be one of the best ways to maintain healthy habits and stay motivated, no matter how old you are.

If you or someone in your family are facing aging challenges, please give us a call at 610-667-2838 or email us at CareManagement@waverlyheights.org. We’ll be happy to assist!