We encourage program members to participate in daily “moderate” exercise, such as walking 10,000 steps a day. What qualifies as “moderate”? Any continuous movement of your hips and knees that causes you to exert yourself without becoming breathless. (Your body needs oxygen – aerobic exercise – for fat burning.) You should feel that your level of exercise causes you to expend a significant amount of physical effort, but if you can’t talk without feeling short of breath, slow down. The amount of exercise a person can do within the moderate range depends on their level of fitness. A good rule of thumb: You know you’re working out at about the right intensity for your fitness level if you can still talk while exercising.
If you cannot devote a big block of time for exercise, you can distribute your exercise throughout the day. Four 15-minute brisk walks spaced throughout the day can be just as productive as doing a continuous hour of exercise.
Be sure to increase your activity level on a gradual but regular basis. The body adapts to the amount and type of exercises you do on a regular basis and after awhile you won’t burn fat to the extent that you had been doing. It’s necessary to make changes that continue to make you work harder. For example, if you walk for exercise you can increase your speed, distance, level of difficulty (include inclines, for example), or the frequency of your walks. Swing your arms when you walk. Many people also find it helpful to do “interval training”. That means you alternate periods of fast walking with short periods of slower walking during the same walking session. The closer you get to your lean weight, the harder you may have to work to affect weight loss.
Find activities that you enjoy so that you want to participate in them frequently and with enthusiasm. Also try adding short periods of exercise throughout the day whenever possible. And be sure to do things like taking the stairs, “pacing” while you talk on the phone instead of sitting, etc. Make a conscious effort to move quickly rather than at a slow or lethargic pace.
No matter what other exercise you do, the pedometer is a great tool to focus on fat burning activity every day. If you regularly increase the number of steps you take each day (even throughout the normal course of your daily activity) you will increase fat burning. Focus on this in addition to any other type of exercise you do and you should notice a positive difference. (If you don’t have a pedometer, you can get one online at www.LindoraOnline.com online store, in a Lindora clinic, or by calling 1-800-Lindora.