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Exercise

Starting exercise

There are many everyday opportunities to improve your level of fitness, but to begin with you should set yourself realistic goals. While many people start out hating exercise, most enjoy it sooner or later and learn to make it part of their everyday life. If you start exercising suddenly you will probably make yourself so stiff you won’t want to try again. You could also injure yourself.

So, if you’re a little (or a lot) out of shape, start slowly to allow your body time to become accustomed to the new demands you’re making on it. Even after a few weeks your ability to exercise will improve, and after a few months you should see an improvement in your stamina. A good way to introduce exercise into your life is to continue your everyday routine but in ways that require more energy. It’s a simple and easy process that means you don’t automatically have to join a gym or your local football club. Here are a few examples – which don’t cost a penny.

  • When you walk, walk a little faster (but try not to mince).
  • Try a 15-30 minute walk, increasing it by a few minutes every week – as you feel able.
  • Use the stairs instead of the lift – especially if it’s only one floor up or down.
  • If you use escalators – walk up instead of standing still.
  • For short journeys walk or cycle instead of going by bus, underground or car.
  • Get off the bus or train a stop or two early and walk the rest of the way.

Get active your way | NHS Choices
Staying active | British Heart Foundation
Get Active London | Get Active London

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