To help you take a step in the right direction, try using the FITTE Principal. By
combining frequency, intensity, time, type, and enjoyment, you'll have the formula
for successful weight loss!
To give you a head start on your fitness journey, read on through the
details and descriptions of the FITTE Principal listed below:
Frequency: Refers to the number of times you will be doing planned aerobics each
week. Aim for 3-5 times a week of planned aerobics. If you can only find the time
to do planned aerobics once a week in the beginning, at least that's a start. But
you will need to increase that if you want to see results.
Intensity: Refers to the vigor or pace of your aerobics activity. If you want to
build fitness, you need to exercise at a level that is challenging to your heart,
lungs, and entire body. A good way to gauge that level of intensity is to rate the
effort or strain you are experiencing while doing aerobics… in other words, how much
you are exerting yourself.
Use a subjective rating scale ranging from 0 to 10, where 0 = how you feel at rest,
and 10= how you feel if you were working as hard as possible. You want to work at
an exertion rating of 6 or 7 where you're walking like you're late to catch a train
or bus. People exercising at this level are breathing harder, have an elevated pulse
rate, are sweating, and can still talk but only in broken up phrases.
Remember to warm up before, and cool down after exercise to decrease your chances
of injury. Simply march in place or ride an exercise bike for a few minutes to warm
muscles, then stretch, and begin your workout by building your pace slowly. Taper
your pace at the end of the workout so your heartbeat returns to normal, and then
end by stretching your warm muscles.
Time: Refers to the duration of your walking. The minimum goal is to accumulate 30
minutes of aerobics on the days that you exercise. If you can do it all in one 30
minute period, that's fine. It doesn't matter if you get it in first thing in the
morning, or after dinner. But you also have the option to do short bouts that add
up to 30 minutes (e.g. 2 fifteen minute power walking sessions in one day). The
total number of calories burned is determined by how long you walk (duration) and
how hard you walk (intensity). For better results, many people end up increasing
their duration of planned aerobics to 60 minutes.
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Type: Refers to the kind or mode of activity you choose. Though many people start
with brisk or power walking, you will want to try other aerobic activities over
time to keep your mind and body challenged and motivated. Other aerobic activities
include such things as doing aerobics videotapes at home, hiking, dancing, tennis,
swimming, jumping rope, or doing cardio machines such as the treadmill, exercise
bike, elliptical trainer, or Stairmaster.
Enjoyment: Refers to doing exercises that you find fun. If you get bored with
walking on a treadmill, try walking outdoors (or vice versa). Seek activities and
exercise partners that make you look forward to your workouts.
Bonus: Workout Nutrition!
If you work out in the morning, make sure to eat a light carbohydrate-containing
meal or snack first, since your body will be low on fuel; eat half a banana or
For workouts that last longer than an hour, we recommend that you replenish your
body's carbohydrate (glycogen) stores within 30 minutes after exercise by consuming
a light snack (like a sports drink or orange juice and whole wheat crackers). Some
people eat half of their breakfast before and half after their morning workout. If
you work out after dinner, we recommend that you wait at least 45 minutes to let
your food digest.
Always remember to drink plenty of water before, during, and after your workout.
And listen to your body. Although you may feel some fatigue immediately after a
workout, you should recover and feel energized within 30 minutes or so.
WARNING - If you feel weak, dizzy, or lightheaded, you need to get direction from
your physician and later a certified personal trainer