25 May 4 Basic Steps to Exercise Right for Beginners
Want to start an exercise program but don’t know where to begin?
Sometimes the word exercise can be daunting. If you are convinced you need to move more, but are not sure where to start, here are our top tips to getting you on the right track.
1. What are you goals?
Before you begin anything it’s time to work out WHY you want to start exercising more.
- Do you know you should exercise more and want achieve more than you currently are?
- Do you want to help your health overall?
- Do you want to lose weight?
- Do you want to help the symptoms of a chronic condition you live with?
- Do you want to complete a fun run?
- Do you want to get fitter to compete in a sport?
- Do you want to look better for a special event?
All of these questions will help provide you with a goal.
Goal setting is so important when it comes to exercising, it gives you an aim to work towards and should also give you a time in which to achieve them.
A couple of good examples of goals would be:
- I want to lose 3kgs by Christmas
- I want to play a full 80 minutes of footie without puffing
- I want to commit to three 30 minute jogs a week
When you have done this, write it down and keep it somewhere you can see each day – perhaps the fridge door? If you need a template download Exercise Right’s goal setting calendar.
Even better share your goals with your family and friends so they can help you be accountable to achieve it!
2. What do you enjoy doing?
Once you have decided your goals, it’s time to work out the right exercise than will help you achieve this.
If you hate running, then why run? If you hate team sports, then why compete?
Not only will you be doing something you hate, you will also be less likely to stick with it!
Take the time to investigate what exercise you might like to do. Maybe you would rather do an hour walk each day or complete a high intensity circuit training session?
It’s important to find something that not only makes you move, but also makes you WANT to move.
Exercise may not always be fun and exciting every day, but it’s important to not loathe the activity. If you do feel like it’s all getting a bit mundane, through in a couple of different activities to mix it up. E.g. if you are walking each day, why not try a hike for a day with a packed picnic?
3. Make a plan and stick to it
Right so we now have your goals, and decided on the exercises that you enjoy so now it’s time to put together an overall plan.
This plan doesn’t have to be full of details, it just needs to be a list of activities and when you are going to achieve them.
Perhaps grab a calendar and mark out your activities for the next month.
It may seem like a simple gesture, but it’s amazing how having a plan will keep you motivated and on track to achieve those goals of yours.
4. Start slow and progress
There is no point going into a new exercise program like a bull in a china shop.
If you push yourself too hard, too fast you are more likely to fail.
If you are starting from scratch, you may suffer from a few aches and pains as your body is just not used to the additional movement. You may have heard of the term DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness), this is perfectly natural and everyone can experience it. DOMS can arrive anywhere between 12-24 hours after exercise and can last for 24-72 hours afterwards.
You will need to start slow and build yourself up to a higher level, allowing your muscles to adapt to what they are going through.
We all hear the terms “no pain, no gain” but it’s simply not true. Effective exercise can be taking your body out of its comfort zone and including a little ‘huff and puff’ but it should never be so painful it either puts you off or causes your body to break down.
4. Speak to a professional if you have any concerns
One of the most important parts is to voice your concerns to an accredited exercise professional.
If you have any immediate health concerns it is best to speak to your local GP.
If you have lived with a chronic condition or have had major surgery or injuries best to speak to an Accredited Exercise Physiologist.
If you have no apparent health concerns then chat to an Accredited Exercise Scientist who is university trained to help put together the most appropriate exercise program for you to improve your health.