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How To Start An Exercise Program When You Feel Overwhelmed

So, you've decided to get in shape. Now what?

exercise for beginners

If you're thinking about starting on a workout routine, congratulations! Taking care of your mental health, getting better sleep & keeping your heart healthy are some of the reasons to make exercising a part of your life. But I totally get that getting started can be incredibly overwhelming—it feels like there's a million different ways to start and ALL of it seems too advanced for a beginner. How do you take that first step?

The best way to learn what works for you is to just get out there and try it—which is both the hardest and the most important step. The fact that there is a whole world of fitness out there is a beautiful thing. You've got options so that you can customize your workout plan exactly the way you want to. There's no one "right way" to embrace fitness. If you have no idea where to start, consider this a true beginning point - an outline for you. Be patient, plan to be consistent and get ready to life that healthy lifestyle you've been dreaming about!

1. Invest in a good pair of sneakers, a supportive sports bra & a workout outfit you love.

Finding a pair of comfortable, supportive sneakers has got to be your first move! I'm a physical therapist and the WORST thing that I hear too often is that someone is geared up, READY and motivated to start exercising but then they get hurt the first week in. It's devastating. If you don't work with a PT then I suggest getting over to Footprints (if you're in CT) or a New Balance store - because they can measure your foot and fit you with the right shoe.

Personally, I am extremely motivated by new workout clothes! You don't have to go super expensive, but grabbing a supportive sports bra and a few cute tops/shorts will do wonders for making you feel the part! Even if you have weight to lose and don't like the way you look or feel in them now - you can always upgrade as a reward for when you meet your goals! 2. Start by scheduling just three workouts a week at convenient times. As you get started working out, think about long-term consistency. A great question to ask yourself is, 'How many days a week can you realistically fit into your life?' Ideally, you will need to work yourself up to 4-5 days a week but you certainly don't have to START there if that's too overwhelming. Begin by scheduling just two-three workouts a week. They can be short 30 minute interval training workouts, weight lifting sessions or yoga in the beginning. Really it is the HABIT you are creating, not necessarily the workouts specifically. Setting a realistic goal is key to sticking with it, and since you'll probably be sore after your first handful of workouts, this means you'll have a few days to recover in-between workouts. It's also important to plan your workouts at the most convenient times possible. Like, if you know you're always exhausted at the end of a workday, it's probably not ideal to plan a 7 P.M. workout. You're going to skip it and feel defeated. You may just have to bite the bullet and wake up an hour earlier - even if you're not a morning person. Set yourself up for success by picking days and times you can really commit to. 3. Sign up for workout c