Congratulations, you’ve done it! You’ve decided to start a fitness routine, this choice to start living healthy is already a great first step but you can’t get stuck there, setting goals is a great motivation to keep you on that journey to health.
Here are some tips to help you get used to new health habits.
Before you jump into your new routine, check in with your doctor because while it is safe for most people to ease into a light exercise program, overexertion can worsen preexisting conditions.
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Start with small manageable goals
Cardiovascular Exercise (called Cardio also) is a good way to start.
The good news for those new to exercising is you can start small, and it doesn’t have to be running.
Try taking a 15 minute walk 2 or 3 times a day, then build up to longer walks or short run-walks or 100 skips 3 times a day.
This is important for heart and general cardiovascular health.
The most important aspect of this exercise is to raise your heart rate and your endurance to maintain this physical activity for prolonged periods; this lessens the stress on your lungs, heart and vascular system.
Treadmills, Skipping ropes, Steppers, Stationery Bikes, Elliptical Trainers, Bicycles, Rowing Machines, Running Shoes and Sportswear are equipment for better cardiovascular health.
Build more muscle/Muscle strength
If your aim to lose body fat then your fitness goals should include muscle building, consider increasing your protein intake also, there are supplements like whey protein powder and others that can help with this if your diet isn’t enough.
When you give you muscles what they need to get stronger you get more out of your workout routine.
Muscle strength is the amount of force your muscles can exert against resistance, it’s usually targeted to different muscles and areas of the body.
Equipment to help with increasing muscle strength are also targeted; ab rollers and sit up benches target abs, pull up bars target arms, thigh toner targets the muscles in the leg.
Dumbbells and Barbells used in different forms of exercise target different areas of the body.
Warm up and cool down
To prevent injuries, you have to develop this habit also, easing your body into physical activity every time you exercise.
Even a 30 minutes routine should have room for 5-10 minutes warm up, usually a slow and easy version of your main activity.
Do a cool down afterwards, about twice as long as the warm up; by this time you’ll realize you’ve stopped sweating.
Flexibility training, stretching and mobility training are techniques for lengthening your muscles and increasing the range of motion of your joints; to some degree your flexibility determines the efficiency of your muscles.
It also improves blood flow, muscle coordination and decreases you risk of injury.
Yoga provides different ways to improve flexibility, and is a good way to cool down after a workout; get your yoga mats, exercise balls, yoga DVDs and more.
I hope these tips help you kick start that healthy lifestyle, and make your routines more effective but remember to talk to your doctor before you start regular exercise routines.
If this is your first time or you’re returning from a prolonged period of inactivity, it’s important not to push yourself too far too soon.
A gradual approach helps prevent injuries and increases your chances of sticking to the new routine over time.
Also remember that consistency matters, so stay motivated by any means necessary, follow other fitness professionals on Twitter/Instagram or keep a diary of your progress if that helps, you can also build a home gym or join a public gym, just remember to keep yourself accountable for your progress!