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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Where do I begin if I have never exercised before?

    I am a 25 year old female and have never gone to the gym. I am overweight and am now determined to lose this some weight. However, I am unsure where to start. Should I sign up for a gym? Should I walk on my own? Do I need a personal trainer?
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  • 1

    Thanks

    Dr Carmel Nottle

    Exercise Physiologist

    I have been an Accredited Exercise Physiologist since 2006 and I am currently working both as a practicing professional and also as a lecturer teaching … View Profile

    If you have never been active before and are overweight I would recommend that you try and find an Accredited Exercise Physiologist in your area and have a consultation with them (go to www.essa.org.au).  They are trained to be able to work with you to help you safely exercise but in a way that fits into your lifestyle. 
    Joining a gym works for some but others can walk on their own which is obviously much cheaper and get the same benefit.  Personal trainers can be good for those that lack determination and motivation but a number don't have a high level of training so can often get people doing things that aren't appropriate which results in injury.
    THe big thing is that you want to make sure that the person is going to help you enjoy what you are doing so that you are able to be fit and healthy long term and not just while you are losing the weight. 

  • 1

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    Zac Jefcoate

    Exercise Physiologist

    Zac Jefcoate is the owner of Exzac Health Solutions. He was one of three accredited exercise physiologist practicing in G.P super clinics in Western Australia. … View Profile

    I agree completely with Dr Nottle, I would strongly suggest you log on to the Exercise is Medicine website http://exerciseismedicine.org.au/ and download the “ getting started” fact sheet. Firstly you need to decide your clear goals and objectives, SMART goals always work and sit with someone who are skilled in facilitating behaviour change ( Exercise Physiologists) to help plan a program for you. Secondly I would focus on regular movement, then worry about sets.reps, time etc, the key to building successful habits is to regularly apply yourself to the task. So try for the first 2 weeks walking 2-3 times a week at a pace comfortable for you , no more then 20 minutes.

    Once you achieve this exercise habit, you will then need to discuss your goals and exercise plan with a health professional\personal trainer. Ask yourself WHY you are exercising and remember health lifestyle is both a habit and journey do not expect to turn your life around in just 4 weeks, its a journey not a destination ( mind the pun).

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