Staying on Track with Exercise
Happy New Year! Don't let the cold weather fool you; January is a better time than ever to get on track with your exercise. After diet, exercise is the next most important lifestyle behavior for meeting your weight loss goals (and that's why your dietitians and doctors always ask you about your exercise!).
Benefits of exercise, aside from weight loss, include stronger muscles, bones, and lungs, lower blood pressure, better blood glucose control, increased energy, better sleeping patterns, and reduced stress.
How Often Should I Exercise?
The Department of Health and Human Services recommends 150 minutes per week. That's just 30 minutes, 5 days per week. If you can't commit to 5 days per week, try to make your workout sessions longer than 30 minutes.
What Exercises Should I Do?
It's up to you. It's important that you do exercises you enjoy, or you're not going to want to do it (for example, if you hate riding a bike, try something else like a boxing class!). Try to get combinations of cardiovascular exercises and strength training. Examples of cardiovascular exercises include walking outside or on the treadmill, elliptical machines, stairmasters, biking, or aerobic/dance classes (either in-person or on a workout DVD).
For strength training, you may want to meet with a personal trainer first if you are not familiar with it. Form is important! You can gain strength by using body weight, free weights, weight machines, or bands. If you don't have weights at home, use cans of food or water bottles!
What If It's Cold/Raining Outside?
Did you know that you can walk inside your house? Type "Walk Away the Pounds" into your search engine (such as Google), and you'll find free walking videos that can give you a good workout without going outdoors. Also look for dancing videos, strength training videos, or anything else online that you would find interesting and fun!
Look here for more info on exercising for bariatric surgery patients.
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