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Getting Started

I'm 53 and have been trying to get more conditioned after a couple years of really being a couch potatoe.  I walk for about 20 minutes every day, which is pretty minimal activity.  I had a stress echo-cardiogram a year ago and checked out just fine, but I'm very deconditioned right now.

I recently bought an elliptical trainer (a Lifefitness 9500).  I find that after 3 minutes on level 1, my legs are burning and my heart rate is about 145 or even 150.  I don't know if its good to exercise that hard for very long when just beginning, but I'm not sure how to really get started, since this is the lowest setting on the machine.  Should I just keep doing a few minutes a day and see if I get better?  I have friends who talk about going for 40 minutes on an elliptical, and I can't even imagine doing that now.

It seems like most of the information about conditioning is either aimed at very athletic young people, or at very elderly people.  I'm not sure where to go for advice on someone my age who wants to get into condition.
2 Responses
410943 tn?1202266042
Well I hear what you are saying. Walking is a good start but increase the time of your walks daily is a MUST to improve. Your elliptical it sounds like is to intense for your fitness level right now. Is there not a "Quick Start" button that will run without a program as most do have that. If it does try that as it will be less intense. Your heart reate should be between 100-125 bpm because any higher and you are above the fat burning zone. You could also try buying some exercise bands for home workouts to start with or if you are comfortable try and higher a trainer at a gym or to come to your home.

Avatar universal
Congratulations for taking control of your life and health!  I know it's not easy but it does get easier!   Not knowing if you are a male or femaleI joined Curves over a year ago and LOVE IT!  

I"ll also  say that the buddy system has always worked for me in terms of exercise.  I too am a walker - and I never wanted to leave my walking partner hanging so that got me into the habit of walking.  Now, I am so hooked that even as long as there is a clear path/sidewalk, safe route (no snow or ice) and light (can't walk in the dark!) I am out walking!  I now do it for stress control as much if not more than weight control or physical fitness .. those to me are the side benefits!  God luck and stick with it!!
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