When It Comes to Being Healthy, a Little Goes a Long Way
Too many people put off their workouts until they have the time for their ideal two-hour cardio-yoga-aquatic-weightlifting regimen. With busy schedules, weeks can go by before you can find time for the Dream Routine. Fortunately though, our bodies respond to exercise on an "anything is better than nothing" basis. Fifteen minutes a day on a stationary bike is infinitely better than an hour on the couch wishing you had more time in your day.
Here are some tips to keep up your exercise habit and stave off the holiday damage through the next several weeks and help create a healthy lifestyle for years to come.
- Weslo Pursuit CT 2.0 Recumbent Exercise Bike
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- Weider Kettlebell
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- Weider Pro Form Pedometer with Heart Rate Analyzer
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- GPX 4GB MP3 Player
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- iLive Home Music System for iPod and iPhone
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- Talk to your doctor first before starting out with a workout program. Your doctor will be able to help assess your fitness level and can help construct a program that is right for your lifestyle, body and goals. It's important to your success to start small with your goals. Challenging yourself too hard, too fast is a sure fire way to become discouraged and fail.
- Balance out your routine. Say you want to work out at least 4 hours a week. If for one of those hours you have a vigorous aerobic workout, then plan on giving yourself at least an hour and half’s worth of moderately intense activity the next day to still keep up your goal of four hours a week, but to also give your body a chance to rest and not overstress your body. For example trying riding a recumbent exercise bike for your moderately intense work out and try some kettlebell weights to improve your cardiovascular, strength and flexibility training.
- Break it up. Two ten-minute sessions a day is just as good as one 20-minute workout. You can even break your workout into thirds. The important thing is to do what you can, when you can. For best results, stick with interval training. A mountain of research has shown that short bursts of high-intensity exercise, interspersed with longer periods of low-intensity exercise, burns more calories than long slow bouts of cardio. Pedal or stride rigorously for 30 seconds, then immediately lower the speed for 60-90 seconds. Repeat this cycle for the length of your workout.
- Move at a pace that's right for you. Don’t think that you need to start out being able to run a 5 minute mile. Listen to your body and be flexible. When you start a regular work out program it’s going to take time to gradually build your body to where you want it to be. If you want to be able to run a 5 minute mile, that’s great but don’t expect to be able to run a 10 or 15 minute mile on the first day. Make small goals and work for there. If you bite off more than you can chew right away you’re more than likely to become discouraged and give up entirely and then where will you be?
- Get a Weider pedometer. We need to be able to walk 10,000 steps per day… that’s a lot of feet movement. That doesn’t mean that you have to walk on a treadmill all day long, you’re a busy person you’ve got things to do. Wear your pedometer around the office, at home, and when you’re out running errands. Check throughout the day to see how many steps you’ve taken. Start looking for ways to add more steps, like taking the stairs rather than the elevator. See what works best for you.
- Dance it out! Move to your favorite music to get your body pumping and your favorite tunes can be a great way to push through your entire routine. Plug in your Mp3 player or put in your favorite dance cd and crank it up! Create a playlist with songs that make you want to move. When your workout is over cool down with some slow jams to bring your heart beat down and to help you relax.
- Tell to your friends and family about your exercise goals. It’s a great way to share your wants and your achievements to the people who you care about the most and who are most likely to encourage you to continue down this new path. Also you may never know, you may be inspiring someone to start their own fitness program.
- The most important thing to remember is keep trying. Never give up and never quit. We all have those days when we don’t want to go to the gym or put on your walking shoes, and that’s okay. Just make sure that you don’t get into the habit of skipping your workout.