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DIET CHALLENGE - EXERCISE: Cornell McClellan, President & Mrs. Obama's personal trainer

Get more: health
01/02/2012

Always remember to consult a physician before starting any weight loss plan.

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If you want to start your new year by adding or increasing an exercise program, we have the right person for the job! Personal trainer to the President and Mrs. Obama  Cornell McClellan! He gives us tips on how to get more exercise in 2012 whether you're a couch potato

Cornell's Fitness Tips

Getting started:

1. Track your progress. The President's Active Lifestyle Award: Activity + Nutrition (PALA+) http://www.presidentschallenge.org/challenge/active/index.shtml provides an easy way to track your progress and give you suggested activities to move.

2. Prioritize your health. It's important to find time to be physically active and eating healthy. Consider waking up earlier in the morning, fitting in physical activity over a lunch break, and scheduling time for your workouts on your daily calendar.

3. Every minute counts. Don't eliminate your exercise for the day just because you have a full schedule. If you're crunched for time, then crunch your routine. Simply decrease the frequency or duration to accommodate your workout. You'll feel better knowing you did something rather than nothing.

4. Ten minutes are better than ZERO. Can't stand the idea of working out? We all have those low energy days. When you're feeling ho-hum, head to the gym or workout anyway and promise yourself you can quit after 10 minutes.

5. Watch one of your favorite TV shows and do strength training moves during the commercial breaks: lunges, squats, crunchesmix it up. Giving yourself mini, achievable health goals can go a long way. Side crunches and leg lifts will help tone your core without blocking your view of the tube. At a commercial, take your heart rate up a notch with sets of jumping jacks, lunges and push-ups.

6. Join a recreational team at work or organize a day for you and your friends to play a game; you burn calories whether you make contact with the ball or not.

7. Take your gym clothes on your next trip and take advantage of hotel gyms and swimming pools. The equipment might not be state of the art, but there's never a shortage of towels. Hotel with no gym? Try push-ups and lunges in your room.

8. Get your glutes in gear. Get on the floor on your hands and knees. Extend one leg and bend it to a 90-degree angle, raising it so that your toe points toward the ceiling. Bring the leg back down and repeat for 12 repetitions, then switch to the other leg. To maximize results, make sure you squeeze your glutes tight as you do it.

9. Jumping rope provides such a great full body workout that an average sized woman (5'4", 140 lbs.) can burn more than 100 calories in just 10 minutes.

Current Exercisers:

1. Track your progress. The President's Active Lifestyle Award: Activity + Nutrition (PALA+) provides an easy way to track your progress and give you suggested activities to move.

2. Every minute counts. Don't eliminate your exercise for the day just because you have a full schedule. If you're crunched for time, then crunch your routine. Simply decrease the frequency or duration to accommodate your workout. You'll feel better knowing you did something rather than nothing.

3. Add strength training to your routine. Try a bicep curl by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart. Place your arms at your side and slowly bend your arm, bringing the weight up toward your face.

4. Trade the treadmill for some new terrain and explore a great path in your neighborhood. Tired of running? Go for a long hike or a swim. A new environment can breathe some fresh air into your routine.

5. Join a recreational team at work or organize a day for you and your friends to play a game; you burn calories whether you make contact with the ball or not.

6. Take your gym clothes on your next trip and take advantage of hotel gyms and swimming pools. The equipment might not be state of the art, but there's never a shortage of towels. Hotel with no gym? Try push-ups and lunges in your room.

7. Take a class. Signing up for a spin or aerobics class at your local gym is obviously a great way to get into shape. But classes also come with more incentives to work out. The fact that you pay for it will push you to get your money's worth and the energy from everyone in the room will help improve yours. Don't worry if you don't know all the steps at firstthink of what a big step you're making for yourself.

8. Buddy up. Working out with a friend is a great way to stick with a fitness routine. Meet each other for a run in the morning or take an aerobics class after work. Just make sure you partner up with a pal you can count on to push you and help you reach your goals.

9. Change up your workouts with a little high-intensity strength training. Increase the weight, reps and/or sets you lift (and decrease the amount you rest in between) and you'll start to see some sculpted, lean muscles (and you'll keep your metabolism humming post-workout!)

Suggested Physical Activity

Children and Adolescents:

Children and adolescents should do 60 minutes or more of physical activity per day.

Aerobic: Most of the 60 or more minutes per day should be either moderate-or vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity, and should include vigorous-intensity physical activity at least three days per week.

Muscle-strengthening: As part of their 60 or more minutes of daily physical activity, children and adolescents should include muscle-strengthening physical activity on at least 3 days of the week.

Bone-strengthening: As part of their 60 or more minutes of daily physical activity, children and adolescents should include bone-strengthening physical activity on at least 3 days of the week.

It is important to encourage young people to participate in physical activities that are appropriate for their age, that are enjoyable, and that offer variety.

Adults:

Adults should do 30 minutes or more of physical activity per day.

Some physical activity is better than none, and adults who participate in any amount of physical activity gain some health benefits.

For substantial health benefits, adults should do at least 30 minutes per day (2 hours and 30 minutes per week) of moderate-intensity, or 75 minutes per week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity, or an equivalent combination of moderate- and vigorous-intensity aerobic activity. Aerobic activity should be performed in episodes of at least 10 minutes, and preferably, it should be spread throughout the week.

For additional and more extensive health benefits, adults should increase their aerobic physical activity to 300 minutes (5 hours) a week of moderate-intensity, or 150 minutes a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity, or an equivalent combination of moderate- and vigorous-intensity activity. Additional health benefits are gained by engaging in physical activity beyond this amount.

Adults should also do muscle-strengthening activities that are moderate or high intensity and involve all major muscle groups on 2 or more days a week, as these activities provide additional health benefits.

Older Adults:

The tips for Adults also apply to older adults. In addition, the following guidelines are just for older adults:

When older adults cannot do 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity a week because of chronic conditions, they should be as physically active as their abilities and conditions allow.

Older adults should do exercises that maintain or improve balance if they are at risk of falling.

Older adults should determine their level of effort for physical activity relative to their level of fitness.

Older adults with chronic conditions should understand whether and how their conditions affect their ability to do regular physical activity safely.

Adults With Disabilities:

Adults with disabilities, who are able to, should get at least 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity, or 75 minutes a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity, or an equivalent combination of moderate- and vigorous-intensity aerobic activity. Aerobic activity should be performed in episodes of at least 10 minutes, and preferably, it should be spread throughout the week.

Adults with disabilities, who are able to, should also do muscle-strengthening activities of moderate or high intensity that involve all major muscle groups on 2 or more days a week, as these activities provide additional health benefits.

When adults with disabilities are not able to meet the Guidelines, they should engage in regular physical activity according to their abilities and should avoid inactivity.

Adults with disabilities should consult their health-care provider about the amounts and types of physical activity that are appropriate for their abilities.

People With Chronic Medical Conditions:

Adults with chronic conditions obtain important health benefits from regular physical activity.

When adults with chronic conditions do activity according to their abilities, physical activity is safe.

Adults with chronic conditions should be under the care of a health-care provider. People with chronic conditions and symptoms should consult their health-care provider about the types and amounts of activity appropriate for them.

Women During Pregnancy and the Postpartum Period:

Healthy women who are not already highly active or doing vigorous-intensity activity should get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity a week during pregnancy and the postpartum period. Preferably, this activity should be spread throughout the week.

Pregnant women who habitually engage in vigorous-intensity aerobic activity or who are highly active can continue physical activity during pregnancy and the postpartum period, provided that they remain healthy and discuss with their health-care provider how and when activity should be adjusted over time.

Safe Physical Activity:

To do physical activity safely and reduce the risk of injuries and other adverse events, people should:

Understand the risks and yet be confident that physical activity is safe for almost everyone.

Choose to do types of physical activity that are appropriate for their current fitness level and health goals, because some activities are safer than others.

Increase physical activity gradually over time whenever more activity is necessary to meet guidelines or health goals. Inactive people should "start low and go slow" by gradually increasing how often and how long activities are done.

Protect themselves by using appropriate gear and sports equipment, looking for safe environments, following rules and policies, and making sensible choices about when, where, and how to be active.

Be under the care of a health-care provider if they have chronic conditions or symptoms. People with chronic conditions and symptoms should consult their health-care provider about the types and amounts of activity appropriate for them.

For more exercise advice visit www.fitness.gov

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