Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Successful exercise

I started lifting weights again! I'm excited. I found a great article about that and I couldn't help but put an illustration of "me" lifting weights - I know, I have too much fun LOL

Secrets of Successful Exercisers Revealed
A Healthy Exercise Routine Doesn't Have to Take a lot of Time or Money
By Jennifer Warner
WebMD Medical News

Think you don't have the time or money to exercise as much as you should? Think again.
A new nationwide survey shows at least one-fourth of successful exercisers have full-time jobs, young children at home, or both, and walking is the most popular form of physical activity.

The survey, conducted among more than 20,000 Consumer Reports readers, reveals the secrets of successful exercisers -- those people who most closely meet the national recommendations for physical activity by exercising at least a half-hour per day at least three days a week.

The results show that sticking to an exercise routine doesn't have to be boring or expensive, and it could be a lifesaver. For example:

58% of successful exercisers report doing three or more different activities per week.
30% of successful exercisers used a fitness facility or gym at least three times a week.
More than half of those who worked out regularly used exercise to treat depression, a heart problem, back pain, or diabetes and said they and their doctors agreed that exercise helped a lot.

Experts say that to reap the most health benefits from exercise, you need to strive for at least 150 minutes of exercise a week, preferably spread out over five days. If you do, the health benefits include a lower risk of heart disease, stroke, osteoporosis, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, some types of cancer, and dementia.

However, if your goal is weight loss, you'll need to aim for 250 to 300 minutes a week.
When asked how they fit physical activity into their hectic schedules and stuck to their routines, successful exercisers offered this advice:

Get out of your car. Many said they walked or bicycled regularly to work. Others arranged their lives so that they could do errands on foot regularly, such as living within walking distance of a grocery store.
Find activities you enjoy. You'll be more likely to stick to a routine if you enjoy it. More than half of successful exercisers said they usually or always got "a feeling of joy or exhilaration" from their physical activity.
Find time to exercise. Successful exercisers recommend working out at the same time of the day, finding a convenient location to exercise, and planning ahead to schedule workouts.
Use weights. Successful exercisers of all ages were 10 times more likely to use free weights to build muscle strength than those who didn't exercise regularly.

When starting an exercise program, researchers say it's important to start slowly, and then gradually increase the intensity and duration of your workout. But the good news is that the survey results also show that once people get into the exercise habit, they naturally gravitate toward longer, more strenuous workouts.
Complete article here