By Dr. Jean Harvey, Ph.D., R.D., Joyce Hendley, M.S., The EatingWell Diet (2007)
Keeping active is a critical factor in helping you lose weight and keep it off for good—but how do you start?
Track yourself to know yourself. Keeping track of the activity you get daily can be tremendously motivating. Start an Activity Log (click to download pdf) now.
Motivate yourself with a pedometer. A pedometer can give you the push you need by tracking the number of steps you take in a day. How are you doing? Need to add more?
1. Are you always ready to walk?
2. Are you dressed right for walking?
3. How can you enrich the experience (music, an arboretum, a local park)?
4. Do you have a plan B for bad weather?
5. Who will you walk with?
Small changes in your daily routine can help you burn extra calories—but with today’s sedentary lifestyles, it’s up to us to invent our own opportunities to move our bodies. Try these Six Ways to Sneak in Lifestyle Exercise, then use our Living More Actively (click to download pdf) worksheet to come up with ideas that work with your life.
1. Use the “5 & 10” rule for escalators and elevators: take the stairs if you only need to go up five floors or less or down 10 floors or less.
2. Walk or bike to errands less than 1 mile away.
3. Do your own gardening and yard work and housecleaning, burning calories and saving money.
4. Don’t be so darn efficient. Do one household task at a time, or make a separate trip (on foot) for each errand.
5. Change “classes” at work. Every hour or so, take four minutes to walk around–a bathroom break, visiting a colleague, etc.
6. Keep moving. While watching your kids at sports games or practice, use that time to walk or jog around the field.
What’s stopping you? Everyone has reasons why they can't start. The EatingWell Diet can help you correct those reasons and get started now. It's never too late! Here are our tips for overcoming exercise excuses: