Discussion on Starting a Fitness Program

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Discussion: Starting a Fitness Program

“Americans can substantially improve their health and quality of life by including moderate amounts of physical activity in their daily lives.” —Dr. Audrey Manley, Surgeon General of the United States, 1999

Most people know that physical activity is necessary for good health. Surveys indicate that women and men of all ages, races, and socioeconomic backgrounds believe that regular fitness is a key component of a healthy lifestyle. The majority of adults, however, do not meet the physical activity recommendation of 30 minutes of moderate-intensity daily exercise. The public is often confused regarding what type and amount of physical activity is recommended for health, fitness, and weight control.

According to the Surgeon General of the United States (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 1999), a moderate amount of physical activity includes 30 minutes of brisk walking or raking leaves, 15 minutes of running, or 45 minutes of playing volleyball on most, if not all, days of the week. One of the benefits of the physical activity guidelines is the flexibility in how they may be applied. The key is to elevate the heart rate and/or engage the muscles in some form of physical activity, not the precise form of the activity. From the professional athlete to someone with limited mobility, physical activity is equally important for health and longevity.

To prepare for this Discussion:

  • Consider your current physical fitness routine.
  • Review Chapter 1, “Understanding Fitness and Wellness” and pay particular attention to the benefits of participating in a fitness program.
  • Review the article “Physical Inactivity: The Biggest Public Health Problem of the 21st Century.” Focus on the benefits of increased physical activity and the consequences of physical inactivity.
  • Review Chapter 2, “General Principles of Exercise for Health and Fitness” and consider your personal fitness goals.
  • Consider the different obstacles that might prevent you from participating in a fitness program and strategies you might implement to overcome these obstacles.
  • By Day 4

    Post a brief description of your current fitness routine and two personal fitness goals. Then describe two personal benefits of engaging in a fitness program. Finally, provide two strategies for overcoming obstacles that might prevent you from achieving your goals

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