Of all the exercise tips out there today, the most essential may simply be this: being a couch potato is much more detrimental to a healthy life than simply getting older. The US Department of Health and Human Services recommends that adults exercise for at least 30 minutes a day five days per week. Not only is exercise a key ingredient for losing weight (and of course, proper diet being another), studies have also shown that it offers some additional protection from heart disease and cancer, while also improving brain function. Exercise does this by prompting white blood cells which may clear out abnormal cell growth that could otherwise progress to cancer, as well as the plaques related to heart disease.
Exercise Tips - Essential Pre-steps to an Exercise Program:
We know that exercise at most any level is good for us, but if it's something we've put off for some time, it's a real mistake jumping headlong into any exercise routine. While many of us prefer immediate gratification and it's only human in wanting to look and feel good quickly, we only hurt our chances for success unless we map out a strategy. Some key first steps:
- Consult your doctor
certain that you are healthy enough to begin exercising. If you have
had heart problems in the past or are currently taking medications, if
you’ve felt dizzy or have had chest pains in the past when exercising,
or if you have bone or joint pain issues, your doctor can best advise
- Identify your goals
What do you want to achieve in 5 to 10
weeks that you can’t do now? It could be walking briskly for 30
minutes, an aerobic routine, a certain number of abs crunches, or even a
stretching routine to start touching your toes. Identify your goal(s)
and write it down in a place you’ll see it everyday.
- Make exercise a habit
order to stay with it, exercise has to become a part of your normal
routine just like taking a shower. Ffor example, set aside a half hour
when you first get up in the morning right before you shower and eat.
Don’t skip your sessions thinking that you’ll “make up” for it later in
the day or week – most likely you won’t.
- Be accountable and stay that way
yourself up for success by telling not only yourself, but others what
you’re doing. Reward yourself when you reach new levels, such as new
clothes or getting your picture taken. Celebrate your successes!
We’re never too old to get off the couch, jump-start a healthy lifestyle and start exercising. Studies have shown that elderly people in their 80s and 90s began building some muscle mass when they started lifting weights! Just imagine what we might do if we start at 50 or 60?
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