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You are here : home > Health > Exercise > Finding a fitness program

Finding a fitness program

Getting into shape depends on the fitness program you pursue. You also need to define a perfect fitness objective and consider other fitness factors. Here are some tips to figure out the best fitness program for your body.


You have put off exercising until now. After much thought and the ever-increasing numbers on your weighing scale, you have decided to take the plunge into exercising. However, the sheer number of fitness programs available can be very confusing. You can opt for less strenuous programs like yoga, tai chi, pilates, etc. or high-intensity alternatives like aerobics, spinning, and capoeira.

All fitness programs have their advantages and disadvantages. However, what really matters is for you to find a program that is best suited to you. Finding the most effective program depends on a number of factors, some of which are outlined below.


Examine current fitness levels

This is the most important preparatory step when it comes to exercising. Before you opt for a specific program, you need to determine how fit you are. This has a dual purpose of helping you select an appropriate program as well as measure your progress. To measure your current fitness levels, make a note of the following:

  • Walk one kilometre. Measure your pulse rate before and after the walk. In addition, note the time it takes to complete the walk.

  • Calculate your body mass index (BMI) or height-to-weight ratio. This determines how much fat your body has.

  • Calculate your waist-to-hip ratio. The higher the ratio, greater are the chances of obesity-related health problems.
If you are over 40, live a sedentary lifestyle, or suffer from a pre-existing medical condition, a doctor needs to determine if you are medically fit to undertake any exercise.


Identify Fitness Goals

Ask yourself why you want to start exercising. If you have been sedentary earlier, perhaps you want to exercise to achieve better health or weight loss. Alternatively, maybe you are already exercising moderately and want to step up your routine. Having a clear fitness goal in mind is the key to keeping you motivated. It can also guide you to an appropriate exercise program, depending on the specific fitness levels you are looking to achieve.


Determine Your Likes and Dislikes

Just because everyone else follows a particular fitness routine does not necessarily mean that it is the right one for you. Consider your likes and dislikes while choosing a fitness program. For example, if you enjoy riding your bicycle, consider joining a spinning class. If dancing is your forte, a dance-based aerobics class may be the perfect match for you. Finding a fitness option you like makes it easier for you to enjoy what you are doing. It also helps you remain motivated over time. It can also tell you what kind of exercise scenario you enjoy. For an outgoing person, joining an exercise class is preferable to exercising alone. On the other hand, a reserved person will prefer solitary routines.


Vary Your Routine

Occasionally, a single fitness routine may not be sufficient to meet your exercise goals. Combining two or more exercise routines is a better option for a full body workout. In addition, it prevents boredom from setting in. Distinct exercises work different groups of muscles and prevent you from straining a group of muscles due to overuse. For example, swimming can be accompanied by weight training to help build muscle mass and prevent shoulder injuries.


Calculate the Cost

This may seem like a trivial step but can play a big role in determining your fitness program. Specialised exercise programs can be very expensive. Similarly, a gym membership is costly as well. If budget is a big factor in your decisions, you will have to find a program that fits your pocket. Hand weights are comparatively cheap and can be used while you are walking or jogging.

If you are considering buying equipment for the home, purchase second-hand equipment to get a discount on equipment costs. Alternatively, you could share the cost of equipment with a friend who is also working out.

Ultimately, be flexible in your fitness options. If you find yourself getting bored, do not be afraid to seek out something new.

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Discussion Forum - Recent Posts
How often do you exercise in a week? Do you have one particular program or do you vary your routine? Is cost a factor in determining your choices?
Harish
I don' t think you should bother that much about the cost. If you genuinely want to get fit, why skimp on the price. Joining a gym is the best way to lose weight. Other programs are not as effective s...
Lata
I had not exercised for many years but my doctor told me to start because my cholesterol had become very high. Initially, I found it very difficult to exercise. My body would pain and I just wanted to...
Shivangi
I agree that you should add variety to your routine. Earlier I only used to go walking but I never lost weight. After I started going to the gym, I found that I was losing weight and also I felt bette...
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