You’ve taken an important step in your health if you’ve decided to become active and start an exercise program! Before you jump in, however, here are a few things to consider:
First, it’s important to get medical clearance to determine that you are fit for exercise, and what the appropriate level of intensity is for you. After you are cleared medically, it’s time (no pun intended) to put time management to work by setting a schedule to be followed. Begin by deciding the days of the week to work out, and the time of day that will work for your schedule. Lastly, make a commitment to hold these dates and times open and uninterrupted. This is perhaps the most important step in determining your success!
Next, determine what you would like to accomplish by exercising (to become more flexible, get stronger, mitigate joint pain, or even participate in a sports event). Write down a specific goal such as, “I will become fit enough to hike 3 hours,” or, “I will become fit enough to start my own raised bed garden by Spring 2017,” or, “I will complete a 5K road race within 6 months.” It’s adequate to set a goal involving a certain volume of work, but it helps a great deal to set an ultimate goal to work towards.
After completing the preliminary steps above, focus on the technical step of choosing the exercise mode that will support your goal. You will benefit more from choosing exercises that are specific to your ultimate goal. If this step seems daunting, you might consider consulting with an exercise professional.
Exercise sessions should include the following:
Mobility/flexibility – Should be done after a brief period of movement that elevates the body temperature and increases blood flow to extremities. In its simplest form, it could be light stretching advancing over time to yoga poses.
Resistance Training – Should involve lifting weights, using resistance bands, or using weighted machines.
Cardiovascular Training – Engage in exercises that elevate the heart rate, which can be accomplished through single exercises done at a high rate of exertion, like running, or performing resistance or mobility exercises one after another with little to no rest between movements.
With just a little planning and commitment, you can begin safely exercising with a goal in mind, and in a short time reap the benefits of improved health and well being! If you’d like the help of an experienced professional to help keep you accountable, safe, and motivated, click here to request a consultation!