If you have not exercised in a long time, you can start by slowly adding physical activity to your daily routine. For example:
* Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
* Walk short distances instead of driving.
* Park a longer distance from your office or where you shop or run errands.
* Take a short walk - 10 to 15 minutes - after lunch or dinner, or take a break from watching TV.
* Walk the dog.
* Get up to change TV channels instead of using the remote.
Talk with your health provider before starting any exercise program. You might need a stress test and other tests before beginning. Your exercise choices will depend on the condition of your heart, blood vessels, eyes, feet, kidneys, and nervous system. Pick a convenient time and place for your exercise, and when you are ready to get moving, do not worry about your weight. Remember that you will replace fat with muscle, and muscle weighs more than fat. If you check your measurements with a tape measure every so often, you will see that you are toning up.
Reviewed by Sharon Howard, R.D., M.S., C.D.E, F.A.D.A - 08/11