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Starting an Exercise Program

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One of the most important things you can do to lose weight is to exercise regularly. Exercise increases your metabolism, burns excess calories and increases your muscle mass, which in turn burns more calories.

Here are a few steps you should take when you are starting an exercise routine:

Check with your doctor. Before you start any exercise program, be sure to consult with your doctor. This is especially important if you have been physically inactive for a long period of time or have health issues that could pose a problem. You should stop exercising and consult with your health care provider if you experience any chest discomfort or pain, dizziness, severe headaches, or other unusual symptoms while you are working out. Seek medical attention immediately if the pain does not go away.

Start slowly. Exercising too hard or trying to do too much too quickly in the beginning can lead to burnout, serious injuries, and frustration. Instead, you should gradually begin to increase the intensity of your workout.

Add some variety to your workout. Don’t limit yourself to a single workout routine. Experiment with different forms of exercise to see which ones appeal to you. If you belong to a health club, try using different exercise machines, such as a bicycle, treadmill and cross trainer, each day. Not only will you be adding variety to your workout, you will also be making sure that you exercise different muscle groups each time.

Track your progress. Keep an activity log of your physical activity in order to track your progress. Record when you worked out, what type of activities you did, the duration of your workout, and how you felt during your workout.

Make your workout as enjoyable as possible. Try to make your workout as enjoyable as possible. Try wearing headphones and listen to energizing music while you work out. Invite a friend or co-worker to join you on a brisk walk. This will give you someone to talk to while you exercise and will also provide you with encouragement on days when you’re feeling unmotivated.

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