Exercise and fitness are very important. If you decided that you want to start exercising so you can lead a healthier life, good for you! Before you begin exercising, though, there are some things that you should do.
1. Examine Your Goals
What do you want out of your exercise routine? Do you want to just get in shape a bit? Do you want to lose a couple pounds? Do you want to lose a lot of weight? Those are all questions that you should ask yourself. You should also remember that nothing happens overnight. So, you have to have a realistic time frame in mind to accomplish those goals.
2. Visit Your Doctor
It’s always a good idea to talk to your doctor before you start a regular exercise routine. It’s vital if you have any existing medical problems, like a heart condition. The doctor can make sure you’re cleared to exercise and maybe even recommend some good exercises to you.
Remember that there are many things that could affect your ability to exercise. If you have diabetes, seizures or arthritis, for example, exercising may be a problem in general or specific exercises may be out of the question. Also, remember that certain medications can cause problems that may make some exercises hazardous. All the more reason to talk to your doctor.
3. Set a Schedule
Once you’ve been cleared to exercise, be sure to make an exercise schedule. When you make your schedule, remember that the body needs some recovery time and that you shouldn’t exercise the same muscles every day. So, you should try to do an exercise routine every other day or so and make sure that you do something different for each day that you exercise. Be sure to get a combination each week of cardio workouts, like jogging or biking, and strength training exercises, like weight lifting.
4. Get Started
There are two things to remember when you get started exercising. The first is to start slow. You can always increase the length or difficulty of your workout routines later on. If you try to take on too much too quickly, you’re likely to get discouraged, at best. At worst you could also get injured.
The other thing to remember is the importance of warming up, cooling down and staying hydrated when you work out. Your body needs all three of those things. Without them, you’re more likely to get tired easily, you could get injured more and your workouts won’t be as efficient.
5. Buy the Right Equipment and Gear
While you don’t need any sort of equipment for some exercises, you should wear comfortable clothes and shoes that are meant for the purpose. You should also use appropriate gear for any exercises that require it. For example, always wear a helmet if you go bike riding.
The other side of that is that you should avoid certain equipment that may sound good at the time. For example, many people exercise wearing ankle weights. That’s not a good idea, though. hey can actually make you more prone to injury because they change how you walk. It’s better to distribute extra weight evenly over your body. So, if you have to have weight, try getting a weighted jacket/vest for the purpose.
6. Stay Interested
Many beginners have a very enthusiastic attitude to start, but they expect too much too soon. If you want to stay motivated, the first step is to make sure that you understand that it takes time to get in shape.
The second step is to make exercising fun for you. There are many ways to exercise, after all. Do you like jogging, bike riding or swimming? Whatever your active passions in life are, you can incorporate them into your weekly exercise routines.
A third step is to make exercising a group effort. Get your family and friends involved or join an exercise group of some kind. You could even organize people at work and create your own office exercise club. Socializing makes exercising more fun and provides you with a great support group. It also makes the time seem to pass quicker.
7. Gyms and Trainers
You don’t need to go to the gym or hire a trainer to exercise, but, for many people, gyms and trainers are very helpful. They can keep you motivated and on track. When you’re choosing one, though, be sure to explore lots of options. Make sure that any trainer you pick has the right certifications and references and that a gym that you pick also comes highly recommended and has equipment and facilities that appeal to you.
8. Sneaking in Exercise
As a beginner, remember that you can get different sorts of exercise all the time, even if you have a busy schedule. For example, try taking stairs, not elevators. Also, if you have an office job, do small exercises at your desk or get up frequently to walk around and stretch a bit. It’s all about finding small ways to sneak a little exercise in here and there.
9. Other Influences
Finally, remember that there are other things that can influence your success with exercise. For example, it’s impossible to get in shape if you smoke or drink heavily. You’re also going to have a lot better and faster results if you eat a proper diet. So, cut out bad habits, like eating too much junk food, and increase your intake of healthy foods, like fruits and vegetables. If you follow all of those tips, you’ll be well on your way to a fitter, healthier, happier life.
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