A Fresh Start
The Best Way to Get Started
Starting out is the hardest part of any physical activity. It's also the easiest time to get discouraged. But by following these simple steps you can boost your chances to succeed and stay on the road to better health:
Step 1: Remember that your safety is the most important thing! If you're a male over 40 or a female over 50, you may want to work with your doctor to set up your exercise program.
Unsure if you want to bring a doctor on board? Take our physical activity questionnaire for help in deciding!
Step 2: Get familiar with the American Heart Association's recommendations for physical activity, including:
- Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activities, 5 days a week.
- Remember that physical activity can be accumulated throughout the day. Three 10-minute sessions is the same as one 30-minute session!
- If you're looking to lose weight or maintain your current weight, aim for 60-90 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity each day
Step 3: Always measure the intensity of your exercise to know if you're pushing yourself too hard or not hard enough. An easy way to do this is by taking the talk test:
- You should be able to sing while working out at a light intensity level
- If you're exercising at a moderate intensity level, you should be able to carry on a conversation comfortably
- If you become too winded or out of breath to carry on a conversation, the activity can be considered vigorous
You can also download this chart from the American College of Sports Medicine and Center for Disease Control and Prevention, which lists physical activities by their level of intensity.
Eyes on the Prize
You've got the desire and you've got the steps to follow. It's time you found the healthier you!