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This week in our 52 Weeks Of Wellness we want to talk about Beginner Exercise Tips. As you continue changing your eating habits and making choices to improve your health, exercise has to become a part of that routine. As many of us have put off that dreaded word for a significant amount of time, it may bring about fear or frustration. We are here to help you find ways to make it not only a priority, but a easy accomplishment.
BEGINNER EXERCISE TIPS
Ask your doctor first. No matter how much you believe you are ready to exercise, it is always best to check with you physician before you begin any plan. Blood pressure, heart disease and joint or bone issues can all play a big part into what is safe or not. Pushing yourself too hard can result in further medical issues that lead to regression. Make sure your doctor is okay with your exercise regimen. Listen to them and their suggestions. They know more than you do about what your body can safely handle.
Start with a week of stretches only. For many of us, being overweight or even obese means our bodies are not ready to “hit the ground running”. Start your first week with stretches only. This will loosen up your muscles and help you to begin training your body to recognize the routine of putting time into exercise each day. This is a great resource for beginner stretching.
Do 10 minute walking laps around your house 2-3 times per day. If you are able to walk at a slow pace around your house already (doing daily chores, etc.) it is time to make that a way to exercise. Instead of just getting up from your chair and going to the kitchen for a drink, make an effort to walk a bit faster and for a bit longer. Walk the circle of your home going in and out of rooms. If you are at work all day, take your break time as allocated by your boss to walk around the building. You don’t have to walk fast, but simply move. As you walk more your body will be able to walk farther, faster and for longer periods of time with ease. As you feel it getting easier, that means your body isn’t being challenged as much and you should add something new into your routine. Walk at an incline if on a treadmill. Walk for 5-10 minutes longer each time. Add in swinging arms or a faster pace. Start slow and work your way up.
Use small weights to help increase strength. 1lb. To 5 lb weights are usually under $10 to purchase. Grab these weights to carry when walking, or to simply lift as you sit in your chair watching television. Adding weights to help build arm, shoulder and back strength is a great slow way to start building up endurance. If you are already heavy, you really don’t need large weights to make a big difference in strength. Even beginning with the movements using your own body weight can make a big difference.
Always stretch and cool down properly. Stretching takes time, but it really can make the difference between straining your muscles and back pedaling progress. Make sure to stretch both before and after you do any kind of exercise. Even 5 minutes of light stretches can help your body to handle the new exercise much better.
These beginner exercise tips are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to working your body to improve your health. In the coming months we will include our own favorite workout routines, tips and ways to keep you on top of your health game. Making changes to better your life can be hard to do, but it is much more important and worthwhile than anything else you will do for your body this year.