By Dr. Brian McDonough

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – One of the major misconceptions as people age is the idea that lifting weights and aerobic exercise are not necessary the older we get. But, if you think about it, the healthiest people over the years have been those who have continued to stretch, eat well and exercise as they got older.

Recently there have been a series of excellently designed studies that have shown that muscle mass and overall strength can continue to improve as people get older. Now I am not saying that a person in their mid-seventies needs to start bench pressing the amount they weigh, but what I am suggesting is that multiple repetitions with lighter weights can be a good thing.

There is far less of a chance to cause injury and the multiple repetitions also serve as a form of aerobic exercise.

I am also not recommending someone who has never been a runner or who hasn’t been a runner for years go out and run a mile, but there is a definite advantage to getting out there and walking — perhaps leading to a jog and a gradual increase in demands.

Remember, each of us is different and we all have different health issues. My suggestion is you check with your doctor before you start any exercise program.

Reported By Dr. Brian McDonough, KYW Newsradio Medical Editor

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