No matter what our age we need both physical activity for good health, and quality relationships with other people for good mental health. As we get older, we need to increase our level of activity just to maintain a historical level of fitness.
Good health - both physical and mental - can be achieved through strategic recreational activities such as bike riding, walking or gym classes with a group of other regulars.
Retiring and relocating sparked for us both a need for increased activity for good health, and the need to rethink our regular points of people contact so that we met new people and developed new friendships.
A strategic selection of recreational pursuits can provide both activity for physical health and the opportunity to develop new points of contact with people for good mental health. Three groups my wife and I have joined are a recreational cycling group (Café Cruisers); a Monday walking group; and a local gym for group core exercises.
We have always enjoyed cycling but the added dimension of meeting with like-minded people is great. As you can tell our cycle group is focused on relationship first, exercise second, but there are many other groups both social and serious.
Walking is a new activity for us, but again walking with others forces engagement and relationship, and walking groups can be found in most communities.
There are plenty of gyms to meet all needs, and while I have a dislike of gym work as a solo, a class brings an element of encouragement as well as relationship.
Regular commitment to these activities has helped maintain our fitness and good health while providing valuable relationships with people.
The hard truth is, there is really no excuse for being lonely or unfit. You have to be strategic and take a risk and join a recreational group. Search for a group, for an activity you like and make contact. It’s that easy. You may be surprised how welcoming the group is.