HEALTH: Post Holiday Exercise

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By Monique Bartlett
January 1st, 2014 Edition

The holidays are almost over and you are now starting to think about losing those extra pounds that crept up on you during the holiday season. The problem is you’re not quite sure where to start. An exercise program which will help you build your lean muscle mass so you can burn extra calories at rest should be your goal.

It is recommended that you exercise at least thirty to sixty minutes three to five days a week. If you’re just starting out you should begin with low to moderate intensity exercise. Cardio seems to get all the attention, but resistance training and body weight exercises are key for weight loss.

Circuit training, CrossFit, Zumba, Yoga, Pilates and other types of exercise such as these can help you get the best of both worlds. These types of exercise programs improve cardio fitness and increase your calorie burn to burn off fat more efficiently. If you decide to lift weights, you can perform more repetitions using lighter weights if you would like to work on muscular endurance, or you can do a moderate number of repetitions with medium weights which will focus more on muscle strength. Be sure to allow at twenty four hours of rest between each of your full-body workouts.

Focus on form when lifting weights. Keep your head in a neutral position, a slight bend in the knees when doing standing exercises. This will help to take some pressure off your back. Remembering to breathe is also vital. Breathe in on the easy part of the exercise and breathe out on the exertion of the exercise. If you’re unsure of proper form it is best to consult a personal trainer who can guide you so you will lessen the chance of injury.

Remember to inform your physician if you are beginning an exercise program for the first time. Always listen to your body. If you are feeling pain stop. Feeling uncomfortable is normal but do not over train because you will pay for it for a long time down the road. Now you know where to begin so get started today!

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