Wednesday, March 11, 2009

It's Never Too Late To Get Fit

Despite the benefits, too many of us aren’t getting enough exercise. Do the excuses below sound familiar?

“I don’t have time”

This is the most frequently cited barrier to exercise. Active people have just as much or as little time as anyone else. It’s how you organize your time. Experts recommend 35-40 minutes of exercise a day. If that’s more than you can spare, you can break the exercise into ten-minute segments and still get the benefits.

“I’m not overweight”

If you think you’re healthy just because you are within your ideal weight range for your height, you are wrong. You need to work towards achieving your target heart rate while exercising. Count your pulse beats for ten seconds after 20 minutes of aerobic activity and multiply by six. If your heart is healthy, the number you get should be between 50 and 75 per cent of your maximum heart rate (generally calculated as 220 minus your age).

“I tried exercising and never lost weight”

Middle age brings many things including a slower metabolism that makes it easy to pack on the kilos. Many people start exercising because they want to lose weight, and when that doesn’t happen immediately, they may give up. Take note that the same volume of muscle weighs more than fat, so you may still weigh the same as you gain muscle bulk.

“I can’t afford a gym membership”

You do not need to join a gym to start your fitness regimen. You just need a good pair of shoes. Walking is free. You could form an exercise group with your friends. If you are staying in a condo, make use of the swimming pool and other facilities available there.

“I’m too far gone”

You are never too old or out of shape to start exercising. However, if you are over the age of 45, you should get your doctor’s assessment before undertaking exercise for the first time. Exercise should be started slowly and built up to higher levels over a period of time. Non-impact exercises suitable for everyone include swimming, walking and yoga.

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