Most of my blogs have been directed at people who regularly workout. This is for beginners and people who need a kick in the “Okole” (Hawaiian for yo’ butt!) to get started. Working in the television and fitness industry for over 20 years, I’ve worked with all levels of fitness enthusiasts: beginners to professional athletes, kids to seniors, X Games athletes, Cirque du Soliel Cast Members, men to women and in-between.
You will get so many benefits from regular exercise. A healthier, more fit body, better quality of life, reduced stress, feeling of empowerment and accomplishment, more energy, a stronger body and mind, increased muscle and definition, reduce excess fat, more confidence, to name only a handful. On “Kiana’s Flex Appeal,” I hosted several segments informing viewers that exercise is truly the “fountain of youth.”
If you are reading this blog you are 1 step ahead. You have demonstrated interest in improving your fitness or helping someone else. Interest and motivation are the 1st steps. The primary goal for a beginner is to start slowly. Over anxious beginners often do too much and wind up getting sore, frustrated and/or injured. Before starting any exercise routine, you must consult a physician to make sure you are in good health to proceed.
Walking: Walking is wonderful. You can do it anywhere, alone, with anyone. After getting the “all clear,” start off by walking at a brisk pace. You should be walking fast enough to increase your heart rate, sweat and carry on a conversation. If you are too winded to talk, slow down. If you aren’t sweating and working out, speed it up. Aim for 3 times per week, 15-30 minutes. Walking is the best form of low impact cardiovascular exercise as you can do it anywhere! I love it since it’s also a fun way to be active with the family, your pets, and is a great stress reliever too!
Increase Strength. Beginners should focus on learning the basic exercises and mastering proper form before adding any significant weights. The basic exercises to learn are: squats, lunges, chest press, push ups, pull ups, bent over rows, bicep curls, dips, close hand push ups, shoulder presses, side raises, crunches. *Try my Fitness DVDS & Downloads. On the workout, I will lead you through a step by step total body workout with the Basic Exercises. (shameless plug i know, but it will help you.) Once you feel 99% comfortable doing the exercises and mastered proper form, add some weight. Select the amount of weight that enables you to do the exercise in the same proper form as you do without weight BUT makes you work. For more exercises, visit my Exercise Tutorials & Demos.
Kids: My children follow along with-OUT weights. Children can learn the proper form so that when their bodies are developed, they can add weight.
Routine. Once you master the basic exercises and are comfortable with regular brisk walking, its time to make it a “routine.” Make it your goal to do both strength training and brisk walking 3-4 times per week, for 30 minutes each. Start off doing 1 set or 10-15 reps. of each basic weight training exercise and work up to 3-4 sets of 15 reps. As you progress and get more comfortable, change up your workout by adding new exercises, incline/decline benches, machines, cables, vary your grip, hand positions and amounts of weight. Intermediate to advanced levels will benefit from my Total Body Basics PLUS Workout DVD and Download. It incorporates a wider variety of exercises from different angles.
Food. Start slowly. or if you are hard core serious, stop eating all junk food and processed foods 100%. The slow method is each week, gradually eliminate 3 “bad” foods from your regular meals/snacks. Increase the number of meals to 4-5 small meals per day. The meals should have a balance of lean protein, complex carbs., fruits and veggies. A good rule is the serving size of protein should be the size of your palm. Complex carbohydrates are brown rice, whole wheat pasta: avoid white starches. Look at your plate and make it colorful with green veggies, colorful fruits, pasta or rice, etc. Soon, you will eliminate all “bad foods” from your daily food intake. For healthy and simple recipes, check out the Healthy Recipes section!