The benefits of regular exercise are unrivaled. Physical activity can help you lose weight and prevent a host of ailments, including heart disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis. Being fit also can help you stay mentally sharp. While most people know they should exercise, you may not know where to start or how to fit it into a busy schedule. Healthy adults should get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity spread out over five days a week, or 20 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity on each of three days a week. An ideal fitness routine also includes resistance or weight training to improve muscle strength and endurance.
Do what you like. Whatever exercise you choose, be sure it’s one that you enjoy. You’re more likely to stick with it if it’s something you have fun doing rather than something you see as a chore.
Take the long way. Avoid elevators and escalators whenever possible. If you ride the bus or metro to work, get off a stop before your office and walk the extra distance. When you go to the mall or the grocery store, park furthest from the entrance, not as close to it as you can, and you’ll get a few extra minutes of walking.
Be a morning person. Studies show that people who exercise in the morning are more likely to stick with it. Are you going to feel like exercising at the end of a hard day? Probably not. If you do your workout in the morning, you’re not only more likely to do it, but you’ll also set a positive tone for the day.
Hire the right help. While weight training is important, if you don’t know what you’re doing, you run the risk of injuring yourself or not being effective. It’s best to get instructions from a personal trainer at the gym.
Phone a friend. Find someone who likes the same activity that you do walking in the neighborhood, riding bikes, playing tennis and make a date to do it together. Exercising with a friend or in a group can be very motivating. You are likely to walk longer or bike greater distances if you’re talking to a friend along the way. The time will go by faster.