Jackie Wright: Ten exercise program essentials
Grand Lake, CO Colorado
There are many factors to consider when choosing an exercise program; however, the following 10 essentials are foundational elements that should be integral parts of any comprehensive exercise program. Consequently, prior to beginning or expanding your exercise journey, check these 10 essentials off the list first. As always, prior to beginning any exercise program, please consult your physician.
• Safe, effective and fun. All exercise programs should first and foremost be designed for safety, then effectiveness and finally, fun or enjoyment. Your safety is the priority. Once the safety aspect of the program has been established, then we concentrate on making certain the program is effective (i.e. results oriented). And, finally, the program should be one that you will enjoy, encouraging motivation and adherence.
• Structure. All exercise programs require a structure/goal orientation (i.e. whether loosely or tightly structured) assuring that there is a logical format/foundation to follow focusing upon providing you with the results and outcomes you are seeking.
• Variety. Without variety, the body often reaches a fitness plateau and fitness levels may actually decline. Now, variety does not mean throw everything at your body but the kitchen sink. Refer the ‘structure’ essential and combine it with the “variety” essential and achieve the long-term results you desire.
• Comprehensive. Regardless of whether the program focuses upon all five physical fitness components or targets a specific need of yours such as core strengthening and stability, the program needs to be comprehensive. All aspects of that component, when possible, should be included and performed.
• Tracking Mechanism. Prior to beginning any exercise program, a baseline of physical fitness should be established by performing a thorough fitness assessment conducted by a qualified/experienced health/fitness professional. This helps to determine where you are at, so that you know where you are going. This information should be logged, tracked and modified when necessary, regularly throughout the program.
• Flexibility. Exercise programs should provide some flexibility so that when life steps in and changes your direction, the program may be modified to address those changes.
• Encourages success. Exercise programs should encourage success. Seek out programs that encourage and motivate you to progress toward your goals. This means that you and the program creators should be on the same page and that you, and the program creators, have developed specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely goals leading to success.
• Expert supervision. Look at any successful elite athlete and you mostly likely will find a successful coach behind their training program and medals. Although most of us are not elite athletes who require a full-time coach, there are few investments in the fitness industry that pay off like a well-designed, supervised exercise program. Seek out programs designed and coached by qualified, experienced, well educated/trained fitness professionals.
• Avoid empty promises. Choose a program that does not promise unrealistic results. There are simply no quick fixes to a fit and healthy body. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is-so don’t do it!
• Location and Time. These are combined because location and time may be connected. Choosing a program that is well located for you and one that is timely obviously affects your adherence. So, choose wisely so your investment pays off.
– Jackie Wright is the owner/manager of Never Summer Fitness, LLC. She may be reached at her website http://www.neversummerfitness.com., her email at NSFGL@comcast.net and her blog at http://www.skyhidailynews.com
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