It’s been a long journey with regular exercise now very much a part of my daily life. This has drastically improved my overall life. Exercise can be just about anything which has some kind of movement. Yoga gets included in my list since it has many complex body movements. At most times, the question my friends, acquaintances and clients have is – what is the best way to begin an exercise regimen? The answer is always is the same – “begin to move”. Don’t be surprised – just note down the amount of time each one of you spends every day without any movements and you will be extremely surprised.
I believe that trying to move more will be a challenge but with some discipline and focus one can make any kind of exercise work wonderfully for you. Another area one needs to focus is what one eats. It is critical to Make small changes over time to your diet — drink water instead of soft drinks or sugary tea/coffee, eat leaner cuts of meat (or go vegetarian), cut out fried foods, eat more fruits and veggies and cut out processed grains. Make changes like that and you’ll be well on your way to a healthier and fitter you in a couple of months. Take it slowly. Your body needs time to adapt to the exercise. If you overdo it you can injure yourself or burnout and neither is good if you’re trying to stick with it long term. Progress gradually in small steps and you’ll stay injury-free with great long-term results. Let’s see what each one of you can do to start –
Interval training for Beginners: For people who are used to an extremely sedentary lifestyle, I always recommend a brisk walk around your office block or even your apartment complex. Doing this in small interval periods of 15-20 minutes is the best way to begin because it does not overwhelm you. Each one of us has a different metabolism and it will take some time to figure out when our body goes on to a fat burn mode. Practice this for a couple of weeks and after this you can include 10-20 seconds of running in between the walks so that your heart rate increases. Intervals are a great way to burn calories and fat (assuming you’re eating fairly healthy and not overeating), strengthen your leg muscles and core and just get healthier overall. This is the easiest form of exercise one can fit in even if he/she has no time for anything let alone hitting a gym couple of times a week.
Play a sport: Remember the school days where we used to play so many outdoor sports! Well some of you of my generation can relate to this. Nevertheless the next best thing is to work on playing any kind of sport be it within your office campus or even your apartment block. There is nothing like working with a group of like minded people especially if you like the sport. I personally know an extremely hard pressed CEO who religiously makes time for his favorite sport because he is extremely passionate about it. Being passionate about a sport can spur you on to develop a good exercise habit. The sport can be just about anything like golf, badminton, squash or even tennis. The idea here is to find your passion and make it work for you in the best possible way.
Circuit training: For this one would ideally require a gym. If one cannot find one in his/her vicinity then reach out to me and we will figure out a way to overcome this. To begin, include one exercise followed by another and another and so on until you’ve done the whole circuit of exercises. Rest for a couple minutes and then repeat the whole circuit. The exercises can be strength exercises, cardio, or some combination. The circuit format keeps things interesting and keeps your heart-rate up. You burn more fat than if you rested in between exercises. One thumb rule here, would be to work your heart up till the stage where you can carry on a normal conversation with some difficulty. Anything more than this is pushing the envelope which I would not recommend for any beginners.
Cross training:One of my favorite exercise schedules is cross training. This is a great form of exercise for someone who has already worked his/her way up in the exercise department. Basically Cross training is working on different parts of the body one after the other. It can be with weight or even isometric (only body weight). what it does is, it makes a person supremely fit since the whole body is worked out. This kind of training does require high amount of discipline and dedication. This is usually recommended for couple of times in a month along with your regular workouts.
As always, if you have health problems check with a doctor before getting into any kind of exercise program recommended by me or anybody else. Once you do get a get go signal from your doctor you can choose from where to begin. You can work your way up to the cross training level by which time you will also be writing like me about what can and needs to be done for someone to lead a healthy lifestyle.
I hope that this Blog has made some of you realise that even professionals at one time were beginners just like you and with time they eventually became experts. The best time to get on with some kind of exercise is today and not tomorrow. Even a 15 minute walk to begin with will confuse your brain which is used to you living a sedentary lifestyle. Any additional tips or questions can be posted on my Facebook Page or even at my mail firstname.lastname@example.org