Keeping Fit in January

January is traditionally the month for making those New Year resolutions – one of which, almost inevitably after the Christmas round of over-doing-it, is the promise to yourself to get fitter.

Every year, that proves to be a very difficult promise to keep.

So this year, Healthy Hearts  is going to try and help by giving a few pointers to starting an exercise programme, one which doesn’t need to be expensive but will hopefully get you feeling in better shape.

And if you start to feel your resolution wavering a few weeks down the line, in February, we’ll be bringing you more motivational advice to keep you going in what’s generally seen as the most difficult period for anyone starting to exercise.

If you’ve not taken regular exercise for a while, let common sense prevail when starting out...

  • If you’re at all concerned about your physical well-being, consult your GP and find out whether you’re able to take exercise straightaway.
  • Don’t be over-ambitious. Start off whatever form of exercise you choose very gradually and build up slowly.
  • Try and make sure you are physically active for 30 minutes a day to start with, something which gets you just ever-so slightly puffed out.
  • There’s no need to rush down to the gym immediately. Don’t commit your time and money to something before you know you can keep it up for a reasonable length of time.
  • Look around the home first. Housework, gardening, a brisk walk round the block and cleaning the car by hand will all get you nicely tired at zero cost.

Once you’ve proved to yourself that you can cope with the straightforward stuff over a period of time, then you can think about signing up to the gym or a sports club or a leisure centre class.

We’ll deal with motivation at greater length next month, but in the meantime, have a think about WHY you want to take exercise. Actually write down the reasons, big and small, for taking up exercise. You’ll be amazed how long that list will get, every one of them a direct benefit to you....and a reason to keep going even when you feel you don’t want to.

Do you have a tip about starting exercise? What advice would you give to someone starting out, or going back to exercising after a long spell doing nothing? Let us know through the form below...

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