Fitness Articles

Think You're Too Heavy to Exercise? - Part 2

How to Keep Going When the Going Gets Tough

366SHARES

Believe me, I know this is much easier to say than to put into practice. I know it’s much easier to believe after the fact than before you’ve seen it work wonders in your own life. But there is no alternative way of thinking or acting that actually works (as far as I know), and I looked pretty hard.

But, if the necessity of starting something you don’t really want to do is the bad news, there is a lot more good news here:
  • Your body will start responding positively to exercise—very quickly. That two minutes you can do on the elliptical machine today will probably turn into 10 minutes in a couple weeks, and 20 minutes within a couple of months. The 100 calories you burned will become 300 just as quickly, with more to come.
     
  • You don’t have to work super hard to get the results you’re looking for. One of the primary ways your body adapts to exercise is by doing the same exercise, but using less effort and energy. This means that working at a desirable level of intensity will very quickly start feeling easier even though you are actually doing more work than when you first started. In technical terms, this is called “getting in shape,” which you've probably heard of and maybe even experienced once or twice yourself.

    The first few times you elevate your heart rate where it needs to be, you may feel like this is more than you can or want to endure on a regular basis. But that doesn’t matter, simply because that’s not what you have to do.
     
  • As you read this, you’re only a few exercise sessions away from being able to work out comfortably at the moderate level of aerobic exercise required to:
    • burn significant amounts of fat
    • reduce many risk factors for cardiovascular disease
    • produce positive brain-chemistry changes for your emotional and physical well-being.
    By this time tomorrow, you can be one exercise session closer to these benefits. This is one of the times when the shoe company is right. JUST DO IT—you'll be glad you did.
     
  • The heavier you are, the more calories you will burn. Now is the time to take advantage of one of the few perks that come with having some extra pounds to move around. You don’t really want to wait until you’re one of those poor skinny people who has to spend hours on the elliptical machine to burn a few calories, do you? Where’s the fun in that? Make that calorie counter hum.
Hopefully now you’re willing to give this a try and see what happens. Next we'll discuss the subsequent problem you’ll probably face after you get over the first hump of beating the inertia and the initial discomfort. You don’t want to let this one catch you unprepared.
Continued ›
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About The Author

Dean Anderson Dean Anderson
Dean Anderson has master's degrees in human services (behavioral psychology/stress management) and liberal studies. His interest in healthy living began at the age of 50 when he confronted his own morbid obesity and health issues. He joined SparkPeople and lost 150 pounds and regained his health. Dean has earned a personal training certification from ACE and received training as a lifestyle and weight management consultant. See all of Dean's articles.

Member Comments

  • SEXYLH40
    I'm like kelliibfit I will start exercising for a couple weeks then stop. ,not sure why . Just started back today. - 5/17/2014 4:14:01 PM
  • Like all tracking, however difficult, it takes the emotions out of it and makes us objective viewers of ourselves. I have been on SP for two months and am learning how to look at food and exercise as things we need to do to live, but the way we do both as the keys to living well. The first article said the most inspirational thing to me that I have found to really be true these last two months: the work you put in and the results you will see in your life are the same skills you will need to overcome any challenge in your life, and applying them to this journey will make us feel powerful, capable, and wonderful about ourselves. - 5/1/2014 7:34:06 AM
  • Like all tracking, however difficult, it takes the emotions out of it and makes us objective viewers of ourselves. I have been on SP for two months and am learning how to look at food and exercise as things we need to do to live, but the way we do both as the keys to living well. The first article said the most inspirational thing to me that I have found to really be true these last two months: the work you put in and the results you will see in your life are the same skills you will need to overcome any challenge in your life, and applying them to this journey will make us feel powerful, capable, and wonderful about ourselves. - 5/1/2014 7:30:35 AM
  • Great article. Keep them coming. - 7/13/2013 11:16:33 AM
  • DONNAREAT
    exercised for the first time!...I think i can ...thanks - 2/3/2013 7:01:15 AM
  • Dean, you really get it! Your article spoke to me...I was feeling anxious just reading it and felt like running into the kitchen to eat something! Instead your article fed a part of me I thought nobody else understood. I can do this, thank you! - 1/31/2013 10:01:17 AM
  • Great column. It is easy to discount a little exercise as both hard and insignificant (because it doesn't bring double digit results immediately). But small doses bring strength and endurance built step by step over time.

    You sure won't get more fit and trim by sitting on the couch. - 12/20/2012 8:10:53 AM
  • Thanks for this article. I was just about to bail out on exercising today. I also thought of something.....I have not been counting the 2x daily walks with my dog. I walk him morning and night and have not been thinking of this as exercise! Usually I do a 45 min workout video or 11 min chair exercise in addition to the dog walking. So I am doing more than what I thought! I will include your 3 points in my daily journal log that I maintain on my fitness page. Luckily you can track all of this on Spark!! - 10/8/2012 8:59:01 PM
  • Man did I need to hear this today just got back from a 30 cycle ride and it kicked my butt. Only been a member for 3 days but loving all the helpful hints!! - 7/10/2012 10:59:34 AM
  • Thank you for writing this article(s)! I feel impowered and I am sooo glad to have read an article that understands where I am coming from and feels like you are speaking right to me! I am going to start this week and also keep that journal. The way you wrote the article is so comforting and great. Thank you! - 12/4/2011 9:29:30 PM
  • Thank you so much for this! It's what I needed to finally start the walking exercise dvd I bought 3 months ago! - 12/4/2011 9:12:51 AM
  • PLEASE more articles like this! FANTASTIC! I needed to know this! - 1/31/2010 8:29:48 PM
  • THIS A VERY INSPIRATIONAL ARTICLE, AND I HAVE NOTHING TO LOSE BUT WEIGHT AS I FOLLOW THESE INSTRUCTIONS OF HOW TO EXERCISE FOR MY SELF AND BETTER HEALTH. - 12/4/2009 5:21:04 PM
  • WOW! Reading the article was just what I need! I was going strong for about 4 weeks and then the last 2 weeks I haven't exercised at all - just seemed to make excuse after excuse. I just started back exercising these last two days and wonder to myself why I stopped in the first place. I ALWAYS feel better physically and mentally after I work out.'

    Thanks you for the motivation to keep it moving!!!!

    Kellie :0) - 4/10/2009 8:36:46 PM
  • This is one of the best articles I've read in a very long time! - 12/4/2008 9:38:34 AM
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