>The Facts on Exercise

>What kinds of exercises should you focus on once you have made a commitment to getting healthier?

I believe that there has to be balance. With exercise, you may need to start out slow. Walking is a good example to start with because you do not need any special equipment, and it is not very strenuous unless you walk very fast!
Next you should find a good teacher who can help you with your balance. Remember that whatever you do on one side of the body, should also be done on the other. A good example of that is yoga training. The poses always include both sides of the body.
Balance is also important for an obvious reason. If you are not in balance, you will get hurt. So know your body, and know when it is not working for you. That probably means skipping a workout if you are not feeling well.
Increasing the Intensity:
If you are going to try more intense exercising such as bike riding or spinning. Talk to your MD about it before you start. Other forms of intensive workouts include dance classes such as Zumba. Both Spinning and Zumba require a lot of strength and stamina to do.
Don’t let that stop you, you can build yourself up to the point of being able to do very intense exercises, even running. You just have to be patient with yourself and take your time with the intensity.
A note on Spinning: My favorite spinning teacher is a person who allows students to go at their own pace in class. Spinning is difficult. You are on a stationary bike that has clips on your feet and a tightening device to imitate climbing hills.  You are expected to listen to the teacher, and he or she will tell you to go faster and climb a hill.  All done to your favorite tunes!
You really do not get used to this type of exercise because each teacher has their own expectations on the classes’ intensity! The goal is the same- to give the students visualizations related to biking outdoors. You are standing, sitting, climbing up and down hills. Therefore, you get an excellent cardio workout with Spinning. Some say if you spin hard enough, you can burn around 700-800 calories in just 1 hour session.

Yoga: If you want intensity in a different way, try yoga. Again, you need a dedicated teacher who will direct you into proper technique on your poses, so try a few classes in different places to find a teacher that you like. Some teachers hold the yoga poses longer and this give you an intense strengthening exercise. There is also a new craze called Hot Yoga where they turn the heat up while you do the poses. Have not tried this yet!
Dance: Dance classes are very popular, and Zumba class is very intense and caloric burning.
 You are expected to dance throughout the hour with only a few breaks. Very intense workout with the right teacher. Shop around.
For beginners, start with a good 1/2 hour walk and then raise the intensity to fast walking. If you take a friend along, make sure you find someone who also wants to increase the intensity to burn some calories.
I call my walking a Power Walk. I walk very fast, swinging my arms in a fast clip! I can feel my breathing increase as my speed increases.
When starting out, you need to balance your cardio with some strength training. Yoga counts, but you may also want to do some light weights that you steadily increase. A good  Personal Trainer can help you develop a weight lifting routine.
Remember that you need both aerobic ( such as walking fast running/jogging/ spinning) and anaerobic such as weight lifting. Both burn calories.
When you start weights, start out light, maybe 5 lbs, and try weighted balls that come in 6-8 lbs at first.
 Some people also try ankle and wrist weights which usually are only about 1-2 pounds. They help too!
The Stretch:
Remember to stretch before and after working out to prevent injuries.  That is why I love yoga so much. The poses are perfect stretching exercises. You can get into just about any yoga pose to stretch your body. My favorites are downward dog,  dancer, forward bends and child pose. Find your favorite!
The Places you can go for help with weight
Doing it alone:
You can go it alone and put some exercise equipment into your basement. This way is difficult for many people. There are 2 items that I have found useful, ( and I do use them in the severe weather when I cannot get outside). I have a treadmill and an elliptical, some hand weights, a jump rope, a small trampoline and  6/8 pound weighted balls. I also have a large yoga ball which I use in front of the TV to stretch. I also have Yoga DVDs that I use on my own. ( I do go to a yoga class once a week for new tips and the social aspect)
Places to go:
If your purpose is to lose weight, there are places to go for assistance. The gym is a good place to start because they have personal trainers who will help you with technique. They  have aerobic classes, such as spinning and weight lifting classes for your anaerobic workout.
 There are  women and men only clubs. Curves is only for women and they stress circuit training using machines and  help people with changing their lifestyle through exercise and eating suggestions.
Weight Watchers is both a support group with meetings every week to help people find like minds! They also include guidance on weight reduction, portion control and food planning like Curves.

I like all of them!
 I have tried many, and the bottom line is Calories in and Calories out!!!!
Other types of help include portion control planning where the food is provided to you. This is helpful if you really have problems understanding portion control. Examples include, Medifast, Nutrasystem and Jenny Craig.

Weight Reduction:
Trying to lose weight and keep it off takes a lot of dedication. It is all about wanting to change your entire lifestyle which includes always remembering about portion control!!
You can  go it alone with just calorie reduction, but it will come back to get you if you do not put in a exercise plan to help you keep it off.
No matter what– you need to exercise! It is the healthy thing to do!!

                                    Take a walk and enjoy the winter weather!  Dress warm!

Try some Yoga!Try some Superfooods!