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How to Choose the Exercise That's Right for You

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 Does it seem confusing knowing what is right and wrong when it comes to being active and fit? Well, actually it is not as confusing as you may think. We live in an age of information. We can hardly go a week without some new advice or findings coming out on how and when to workout, what and what not to eat, etc. It is just great to be informed but too much information is what I believe leads to all this confusion. A person can hardly keep up with it all.

A very simple way to look at working out is this: Get active. You may be thinking that this is not profound enough or specific enough, but it is really exercise simplified. Exercise is moving your body, pure and simple. If you know that you are in need of incorporating physical activity into your life, then pick something and move.

If you are confused about whether you should walk, join a gym, take classes, do yoga, lift weights, go bike riding, dance, do Pilates, go swimming, choose the activities that, first of all, you enjoy; and second, that you will actually do.

When it comes to exercising, you really have to figure out what it is that you can get yourself to do. Not every person enjoys every activity. Some people love to walk; some people love to lift weights; some people need the motivation that comes from taking a fitness class; some people are goal oriented and some are not; and some people are the outdoorsy types and some definitely are not. It is really important to get inside your own head and know what you like and dislike.    

Many gyms, yoga and Pilates studios offer free classes or trials so that you can test the water and see if it will work for you. I highly recommend trying things out before you commit. Basements all across the country are full of exercise equipment that goes unused because it was bought with great intentions, only for the purchaser to realize that they really don’t like working on exercise equipment in their basement. This is just one example of someone going ahead with something without really knowing whether or not they would like it.

A good motto is this: The best workout for you is the one that you will actually do.” It is important not to worry about what other people are doing. If you have a friend who is in good shape, you may be tempted to try the same activity. That is fine, but that does not mean that you will be able to do the same; it may not be a good fit for you. You may not enjoy it, or you could suffer an injury if the exercise is not appropriate for your level of fitness.

Be sure to consult your physician before beginning any new exercise program.

With so many choices out there, everyone should be able to find some way to add physical activity into their lives that they can actually enjoy doing. So try some different things, figure out what works for you and begin to reap all the many benefits that fitness can provide.