Exercising can be tough for even the fittest and healthiest people. Many of us find it extremely hard to start a new workout routine, especially obese people. Women with larger waists approximately 80cm+ or 45kg / 100lbs / 7 stones overweight are considered to be obese. If you fall into this category, daily activities can be a huge task, never mind exercising!
Unlike people with an ideal body weight, obese people are confronted with many challenges when they decide to work out. Firstly, a larger body makes movements difficult because you exert more pressure on your joints. Secondly, most fitness studios and gyms can be daunting to obese and healthy people. Thirdly, it can be confusing and challenging to create your own exercise programme and that is exactly why I have created the most amazing programme out there, The Body & Mind Programme to help educate and get you on the right path.
Obese women, just like everyone else, need to exercise, in fact, most importantly if you are obese. Why you ask? To improve your health and benefit from the results and feeling that exercise brings! Exercise can help you lose weight, improve your mood and change the way you feel and look at your body. In addition to reducing your weight, exercise can lower your blood pressure, enhance insulin sensitivity, and reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. It can also help prevent heart disease, sleep apnea, and depression.
You may think that it is impossible to exercise an obese woman and that you definitely need a gym, but this isn’t strictly true… You can still engage in some workouts that don’t exert excess pressure on the joints while providing the benefits of exercise and do it in the comfort of your own home. It is important to make sure you are healthy enough to withstand the rigours of any physical activity before you start a new exercise plan. It is advised that you talk to your doctor about your new exercise regime as well as limitations that may apply to you.
Let’s have a look at a few exercises you can do as an obese woman along with recommendations and benefits of each one.
Walking is one of the best exercises for getting into shape, and it is a favourite among people of all ages, sizes and shapes. Walking is great for many reasons, it’s not location specific, making it easy to do it anywhere you like and requires no equipment apart from your walking shoes and some clothes. Walking is also a low impact exercise that places a small amount of pressure on the joints, making it ideal for people who are obese. Walking improves mobility and strength in the lower body, and you can vary the intensity as easy, moderate, or high intensity.
If you experience back, knee, or hip pain, walking can be difficult, and that is why you should aim to start walking but take it easy, literally step-by-step! Strive for progress, not perfection.
Start walking for about 10 to 15 minutes twice to three times per day and continue to increase the duration every week. The most important thing here is to walk regularly. With time and as your fitness level improves, you can also increase your speed and intensity. You can buy a cheap pedometer, an activity tracker or even use your smartphone to monitor your progress. The more you walk, the more calories you can burn, the more your aerobic system is improved and the fitter you become.
Water activities such as swimming are ideally suited to people who have difficulty moving or painful joints. Swimming still burns calories and trains the aerobic system without placing too much stress on your joints. It delivers a full-body workout because every part of your body is involved in the activity. Apart from swimming, aqua aerobic classes can be great fun and make the time pass a lot quicker.
Strength training provides many benefits for overweight exercisers. Strength training works the muscles and joint, it can help correct postural defects arising from a heavy body weight, which puts pressures on the hips, knees and ankle joints. Training with weights can also increase your range of motion; increase your muscle mass which also boosts your metabolism, helping your body become more efficient at burning fat during exercise and whilst you rest.
To make the most of strength training, it is always best to invest in a coach, it doesn’t have to be an in-person trainer, but an online coach like myself can provide you with the correct programme along with video tutorials. You can do strength training at home, if you are able to invest in weights and have space, or you can also join the gym. Remember to start slow and increase the frequency and intensity as your fitness level improves.
Being obese doesn’t mean you can’t exercise; in fact, it makes it more important to engage in physical activities. By working out regularly at the right intensity, you will burn more fat and move towards an ideal body weight.