Be honest with yourself. Do you really need to lose weight in order to be healthy? Are you already in a healthy weight range, but wish to drop a few pounds and tone up? Are you underweight? Knowing this will help you determine the right diet and exercise options for you.
- If you don’t already know it, measure your height.
- Use a tape measure to determine the circumference of your target area(s). Suggested areas: upper arm, chest, waist, hips, and thigh.
- Weigh yourself. For the most accurate measurement, use a digital scale and weigh yourself in the morning before you have eaten anything.
Start running, jogging, walking uphill, biking, and/or swimming on a regular basis. These and other cardio-intensive exercises will help you burn calories, speed up your metabolism, and improve your cardiovascular health.
- Do 30 minutes of cardio at least 3-5 times a week.
- If you are a gym member, try the elliptical trainer, stationary bike, and other cardio equipment your gym has available.
Standing Dumbbell Curl
Fitness Focus: Biceps, Shoulders
- Stand with feet shoulder-width apart.
- Hold a 3- to 10-pound dumbbell in each hand, arms straight at sides with palms facing forward, and curl dumbbells to shoulders (not shown).
- Fan elbows out to sides and turn palms to face forward so elbows are bent 90 degrees.
Not everybody loves to run. Try out different exercises and commit to the one you enjoy the most. This way, you’ll be more likely to stick with it.
Join a class. Most gyms offer spinning, cardio kickboxing, Zumba, and more. Working out with a group will push you harder than you push yourself, especially if you are new to exercising.
Dance! Not all exercise has to feel like work. If you’re not in the mood to work out, put on some music and dance, dance, dance like no one’s watching.
Make simple lifestyle changes.
- Walk to your destination instead of driving. If you drive somewhere, park further away than you normally do.
- Do chores around the house. These burn more calories than you’d think!
- If you work a desk job, make sure you are standing up and walking around every couple of hours. Use your break time to go for a brisk walk outside.
- Do not over-exert yourself when exercising. Take your heart rate, and know your limits.
- Make sure you are properly using exercise equipment in order to prevent injuries.
- Consult your doctor before starting a new diet or exercise routine.