Many overweight people want to start exercising to lose weight. But without having an established sports habit or good physical condition as a starting point, it can be dangerous to start exercising suddenly.
Overweight is a state that has several associated diseases, including cardiovascular, respiratory and endocrine, such as cholesterol, diabetes or hypertension.
“And mechanically, being overweight leads to a lack of joint mobility,” explained Luis Berbel, president of the Society of Personal Trainers in Valencia.
In addition, on many occasions the overweight is also accompanied by osteoarthritis and back pain.
Starting from this base, according to Berbel, someone with overweight who wants to start exercising has two great disadvantages: on the one hand, it tends to lack a habit of physical activity and must progress gradually from level to level.
As soon as you leave the regimen, you are likely to return to your old habits and recover your weight.”
The secret to success, according to the NHS, is “make realistic changes in your diet and start a level of physical activity that can be part of your daily routine.”
And follow them for life.
10 practical recommendations
Avoid activities that trigger the frequency of cardiac activity.
It also recommends a combination of moderate cardiovascular training with strength or muscle training . Strength exercises do not burn as many calories as cardiovascular ones, but, according to Berbel, they help improve joints and make muscles more active and consume more calories to maintain their resting state.
Do not do strenuous exercise . Ideally, according to the expert, is that you can have a conversation while you exercise.
You can supplement strength training and moderate cardiovascular with mobility exercises .
Avoid the impact exercise, in which the overweight person has to stop suddenly or jump. For example, a class in the step gym , which helps burn a lot of calories, will not be the most appropriate for an overweight or obese person, because it involves impact activities such as jumping and rhythmically rising and falling, so it may be too much. intense Running can also cause problems with the joints.
Among the cardiovascular exercises and activities that Berbel recommends in moderation are cycling, skating, swimming, rowing, going up and down stairs, and walking or climbing hills.
According to Barbel, for walking to have some impact, it must be done at a good intensity , otherwise it will be a very poor stimulus, although very healthy in general terms.
In gyms, it is recommended to take advantage of special machines that minimize impact , such as elliptical machines, which are also equipped with heart rate monitors so that the overweight person can monitor their cardiac activity.
Choose the environment well : some overweight people may feel observed or out of place in a collective class in a gym. According to Berbel it is good to take into account this psychological aspect to positively stimulate the person who wants to be in shape.
Follow the guidance of a professional : according to the coach, it is dangerous to start doing suddenly and on your own physical exercise of intensity to lose weight, for example following an Internet search or signing up for a special cardiovascular class to lose weight, such as a circuit indoors in a gym.
Berbel recommends that it is a coach who initially establishes the doses of exercise and develops a training plan according to the needs and objectives of each person.
The professional, who does not have to be a personal trainer who is with you all the time, can periodically assess your progression and modify the plan if necessary to maintain the progression.