Exercise – How to Get Started

Exercise – How to Get Started

No Excuses!

Beautiful spring weather makes for great exercising!

I will have to admit that, over the past couple of months, I have let my exercise regimen lax up a little. I haven’t been working out like I should and I’m on a quest to get back going again, especially now that spring is here and the weather is beautiful. So, here I am to encourage you to do the same. Let’s exercise “together”!

First, I’m wondering what information regarding exercise would be most helpful to you (i.e. would you like to know how to get started, how to make your “old faithful” program a little more exciting, how to find new shoes, etc?). Please send me whatever exercising questions you have and I’ll try to answer them myself or find someone else who knows the answer! I’m also open to any questions you have regarding “sports nutrition” or performance.

This week’s exercise tips include how to get started exercising (for the first time or for returning exercisers):
– Check with your doctor – Especially if you have ever had problems with your blood pressure, blood sugar, joints, etc. Make sure you are physically able to begin exercising.
– Get some good shoes – Nothing (believe me, I’ve been there) is more depressing than to get started on a good schedule of exercising and then be sidelined by an injury. Go to a store that has someone knowledgeable to help you pick out some good shoes for your feet for the activity you will be doing. It’s OK to ask them to show you which shoes are for you and are on sale!
– Set a schedule – If you don’t make an appointment to exercise, no one will do it for you. Make exercising a priority (if that means exercising before work, do it). Getting a buddy to meet you to exercise can help keep you accountable.
– Start gradually and set a reasonable goal – Decide how much time you are going to set aside and for how many days of the week. A good place to start is 30 minutes, 4 days per week (i.e. Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and 1 weekend day). Choosing a goal race to walk or jog in is a good way to keep yourself motivated. If you are just starting to exercise in March, choose a 3 mile or 5K (3.1 mile) race to walk or walk/jog in this fall and tell friends and family members your goal so they can encourage you along the way.
– Get yourself excited – Get yourself a cool new exercise t-shirt or even an ipod – anything to get yourself excited about exercising! Think about what a wonderful thing you are doing for your body!

Remember: Make the focus of your exercise program to be overall health, not just weight loss. Think about the positive effect exercising will have on your heart, mind, and energy levels. Read motivational stories of people who have begun an exercise program and gotten their diabetes or high blood pressure under control.

Note: Recommendations are to exercise at least 30 minutes per day for good health, 60 minutes per day for weight loss, 60-90 minutes per day for weight loss maintenance, and 60 minutes per day for children.