Before Starting Exercise

before starting exerciseBefore you start any new fitness regime you should arrange to meet with your doctor. If you are fit and healthy you should be fine to get started. However, there are some circumstances when it is highly advisable you see your doctor first.

You should ensure that you are healthy and fit enough to follow the fitness regime and are not putting yourself in any type of danger, especially if you have any pre-existing medical conditions or are on medication. Below are some guidelines provided by the US National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. If any of the medical conditions or points affect you, you should categorically see a doctor before starting a new fitness plan:

  • High blood pressure
  • Pains or pressure in the chest, left side of your neck, left arm or left shoulder, esp during or immediately after exercise
  • Episodes of dizziness or faintness
  • Breathlessness after mild exertion
  • Medical condition such as diabetes that may need a little closer attention once you start exercising
  • Heart trouble, heart attack or heart murmur
  • Arthritis
  • You are over the age of 60 and have not been physically active
  • You have family members who suffered with coronary artery (heart) disease before the age of 55
  • You plan a vigorous activity program

None of these things mean that you cannot exercise, but simply that a doctor must check you out first. The doctor will either clear you immediately, jiggle round your meds first, perhaps request some blood tests or suggest you adapt your exercise program to suit your needs.


Unless you are advanced , do not exercise on an empty stomach. Your aim is to lose weight, but do not skip on fueling up before you exercise. Make sure you eat a small snack about 30 minutes before your workout. Also, make sure that your general calorie restriction is reasonable. No very low calorie diets (under 1200 calories). You need to give your body enough energy to allow you to exercise successfully, as well as for your body to recover effectively and to prevent ill health.

Unless you are exercising every day, which isn’t advisable, as your body needs time to rest, heal and recover, you should plan for your calorie intake to vary between the days you exercise and the days you rest. Eat a little more on the days you exercise and less on the days you rest. This will ensure that your body gets the energy it needs to function, while maintaining your calorie restriction (diet).

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