Move it throughout the day! Get enough activity that makes you breathe a little harder. Five minutes here, ten there – add it up and go for thirty minutes a day. You don’t have to suit up or climb on an exercise machine to get the benefits of activity.
Balance your activity so that you’re still able to talk while you’re exercising, but not as easily as you could sitting down or just standing. If you find yourself unable to talk, you’re probably overworking yourself.
The more you move and use your muscles, the better fit you’ll become. Your bones will become stronger, too.
Don’t forget the stretching. It will help keep you flexible and able to move more easily. Do walk around a bit to warm up your muscles—save the stretching for the end of your workout so you don’t hurt or damage any muscles. If you save your stretching to the end of your workout, your muscles will be “warmed up” already and you’ll find that your flexibility is increased with each stretch!
Work on your balance. Begin by standing on one foot, bracing yourself with one arm. Work towards standing on one foot at a time without holding on to a support. Just practice this for a few minutes at a time. You’ll find your overall balance improving greatly.
If your main occupation has been “couch potato” for several months, you’ll want to start exercising gradually. Little by little build up your activities and how hard you work at them. Before long, you’ll find yourself moving along with more energy and vitality!
You hear personal trainers emphasizing this mantra to their clients, “Breathe! Breathe!” For some strange reason, we tend to hold our breath when exercising. What you want to get into the habit of is breathing out while your muscle is working, and breathing in when it relaxes. So as you’re lifting something, breathe out as you lift; breathe in when you stop. At first, you’ll need to remind yourself of this frequently.
Drink plenty of water when you’re doing activities that make you sweat so you don’t risk dehydration. Dehydration can be measured by pinching the skin on the back of your hand—if you can grab it when you make a fist and it (the skin) stays “up,” you’re dehydrated. You may also feel dizzy, tired, and be more prone to headaches. So stay hydrated!
Exercise shouldn’t cause you pain. You may feel tired after exercising, but if you’re actually hurting, something’s wrong—you’ve overdone it. Try easing up the next day, and not doing anything that strains the aching muscle too much. Alternate cold and heat on the aching area, and if your doctor okays it, take ibuprofen or naproxen sodium to relieve the pain.