It’s been some time since you exercised! You want to get active again and you’re wondering: “How to start exercising again?” Read on to find out!
If you have not been active and have not engaged in regular physical activity for a while, it is important that you assess your present fitness level and health condition.
However, if you have a medical condition such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes or asthma, not all forms of physical activity may be suitable for you. Check with your doctor or a fitness professional on the type, intensity and duration of physical activity that you can start with.
We all know that physical activity is good for us. But often, we give ourselves excuses for not exercising regularly. Below are some excuses for not getting active and the suggested solutions:
I'm too tired.
I'm too lazy.
I'm too busy/I don’t have time
I might get injured.
I find it difficult to start.
The weather is too hot.
So, no more excuses! Instead, think about the ways in which physical activity will enrich your life!
You can start with simple moderate-intensity activities such as brisk walking, cycling or swimming three to four times a week. These activities are generally safe for everyone and the risk of injury is low. The key to sustaining your interest in any workout routine is to choose activities that you will enjoy.
Engage in different types of exercise or physical activities and aim for at least 150 to 300 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic activities and at least 2 days of strength training every week to build up your aerobic fitness and strengthen your muscles. It may seem a daunting task with your busy lifestyles but every little bit counts.
You can include physical activity into your daily routine and even engage in some of your other favourite activities while you exercise. For example, you can jog with your dog or watch TV while cycling on a stationary exercise bike.
When you’re ready to challenge yourself further, set fitness goals (both short-term and long-term) for yourself!
Be flexible with your timing. You don't have to do all your physical activity at one go. If you cannot set aside 30 minutes a day for your exercise routine, break it up into smaller bouts. You can gain health benefits even by doing shorter but more frequent activities throughout the day.
You can even incorporate the sessions into a mode of transport where you could cycle to work or stop a few bus stops earlier and brisk walk home!
When starting an exercise programme, always start slow. Your body needs time to adjust to the increased physical activity, especially if you have not been active. This will help to prevent injuries and the potential onset of muscle soreness.
You can subsequently increase the intensity and duration of your activity as your fitness level improves.
Always do warm-ups and cool down properly before and after a session of physical activity.
Warm your muscles up by doing your activity at a slower speed or lower intensity. For example, before your jogging session, you could walk briskly to warm up.
After your activity, cool down by performing gentle stretches. This helps to improve flexibility and prevent aches.
To sustain your interest and make active lifestyle your way of life, apply the following tips:
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This article was last reviewed on
22 Nov 2023
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