The Best Exercise Routine: Follow These Seven Steps

Best Exercise

The time you spend exercising is a valuable investment in good health. To help you develop a successful exercise program, here are seven steps to follow. Creating an effective exercise routine is very important to achieve your health goals.

Step 1: Realize The Importance of Physical Exercise

The first step in creating an effective exercise routine is to realize how important regular exercise is for our health. We cannot emphasize enough on this. You have to accept the benefits of everyday exercise and start exercising from today. Regular exercise should be a top priority in everyone’s life.

Step 2: Consult Your Physician

You should always take a medical checkup done and get clearance from your doctor, if you have health problems or if you are over 40. The main thing to check is your heart function. Exercise can be quite harmful (and even fatal) if your heart is not able to meet the increased demands placed on it.

It is especially important to see a physician if any of the following applies to you:

  • Heart disease
  • Smoking
  • High blood pressure
  • Extreme breathlessness with physical exertion
  • Pain or pressure in chest, arm, teeth, jaw, or neck with exercise
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • Abnormal heart action (palpitations or irregular beat)

Step 3: Select an Activity You Can Enjoy

If you are declared fit to begin an exercise program, choose an activity that you feel you would love doing. Select activity ideas from the list below, or come up with some on your own. Make a commitment to do one activity a day for at least 20 minutes and preferably 1 hour. Enjoying the activity should be your main goal. The best thing is to move your body enough to raise your pulse a bit above its resting rate.


  • Bicycling
  • Bowling
  • Dancing
  • Gardening
  • Golfing
  • Heavy housecleaning
  • Jogging
  • Stair climbing
  • Stationary bike
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Treadmill
  • Walking
  • Weight lifting

The best exercises are the ones that raise your heart rate the most. Aerobic activities such as walking briskly, jogging, bicycling, cross-country skiing, swimming, aerobic dance and racket sports are good examples. Brisk walking at a speed of 5 miles (8.05 km) an hour for approximately 30 minutes is considered one of the best exercises for weight loss. You can walk anywhere. You don’t need any expensive equipment. All you need is your jogging suit and comfortable shoes. Walking is also a very safe exercise which can be easily done by anyone of any age. A good pair of high quality and comfortable jogging shoes is very important if you plan to walk regularly.

Step 4: Monitor Exercise Intensity

Exercise intensity is calculated by measuring your pulse or heart rate (the number of times your heart beats per minute). This can be quickly and easily measured by placing the index and middle fingers of one hand on the side of your wrist. Count the number of heartbeats for 60 seconds. An easy way to calculate your maximum training heart rate is to simply subtract your age from 185. For example, if you are 50 years old, your maximum heart rate would be 135. To determine the minimum rate of the training zone, simply subtract 20 from this number. In the case of a 50-year-old, this would be 115. For optimal health gains, you must stay in this range and never exceed it.

Step 5: Do It Often

You can’t get in good physical and healthy condition by exercising only once a week. Exercise should be done on a regular basis for optimum health and physical results. Get a minimum of 15 to 20 minutes of exercise at your training heart rate at least three times a week.  This is important if you want to see any significant positive change in your health from exercise.

Step 6: Make It Fun

Enjoying your exercise is very important and will easily help you complete those hectic 20 minutes or more of training. Choose something you have fun doing. If you enjoy your exercise, then there is a great chance you would do it regularly. Adding a workout partner is one way of making exercise fun. For example, if you choose walking as your activity, find one or two people in your neighborhood you would enjoy walking with. An added plus is that if you have plans to walk together, you will be more likely to actually get out there than if you depended solely on your own willpower

Step 7: Stay Motivated

No matter how committed you are to regular exercise, at some point you are going to be faced with a loss of enthusiasm for working out. Our suggestion is to take a break. Just skip one or two workouts in between. This gives your enthusiasm and motivation a chance to recharge so that you can come back with an even stronger commitment.

Here are some other things to help you to stay motivated:

Go through fitness magazines

Try ones such as Men’s Health, Muscle and Fitness, or Runner’s World. Looking at pictures of people in fantastic shape can be inspiring. In addition, these types of magazines typically feature articles on new exercise routines that you may find interesting.

Set exercise goals

Being goal-oriented helps keep us motivated. Success breeds success so set a lot of small goals that can easily be achieved. Write your daily exercise goal and check it off when you complete it.

Vary your routine

Variety is very important to help you stay interested in exercise. Doing the same thing every day becomes monotonous and drains motivation. Continually find new ways to enjoy working out.

Keep a record of your activities and progress

Sometimes it is hard to see the progress you are making, but if you write in a journal, you’ll have a permanent record of your progress. Keeping track of your progress will motivate you to continued improvement.

Strength Training

We also recommend you engage in strength training (such as lifting weights or performing resistance exercises) at least three times a week. Strength training is especially valuable, as it not only increases muscle strength but also stabilizes blood sugar, promotes fat loss and protects against age-related muscle loss. 

Creating an effective exercise routine is the main tool if you want optimal health gains.


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