Getting Your Workout On - Slowly
Spring is finally upon us and after a long, cold winter, many people are anxious to get outside to exercise. If you have been playing couch potato through the winter months, you want to make sure you take it slow at first.
"You’ve got to start easy, especially for those who have been cooped up for the many months of winter it seems this year. So it take it little by little, it's nice outside get out check the mail, by the time you check the mail maybe walk around the block once but you have to take it slow and work up to that eventual goal of being much more active throughout the spring time. But just get out get out of the couch turn the TV off and get outside clean up the yard pick up the sticks eventually you know set your goal for every day I'm going to walk a little bit more but you got to do it gradually," says Dr. Kurt Bloomstrand, Emergency Medicine Physician.
According to the American Heart Association, 69% of all adults are obese or overweight, and that number continues to increase.
The A-H-A encourages physical activity - anything that makes you move and burn calories – especially the older you get. Studies have shown physical activity helps prevent bone loss, increase muscle strength, and improve coordination and balance as we age.
While physical activity does a body good, if you have any long term or chronic conditions, make sure you have the okay from your doctor first.
The A-H-A has specific recommendations to help improve your overall health.
"So at the minimum you should be doing moderate intensity 30 minutes a day at least five days a week. Now when we say moderate intensity that might be going for a 30 minute walk or walking around the neighborhood You may not be able to start out at 30 minutes ago a week to 10 minutes then the next week go 15 minutes and the week after that 20 and you slowly and gradually build up to that 30 minute goal. And again we know that those people who do cardio vascular aerobic activity they're not on as many blood pressure medications, their heart risks are lower, their cholesterol numbers go down and their stroke risks decrease," explained Dr. Bloomstrand.
Learn more about the American Heart Association guidelines.