The ideal exercise program combines strength training, aerobic exercise, and stretching (flexibility) exercises. These videos show strength training exercises that are specifically designed to fit into a weight loss plan, along with some tips on how to do each one.

But you don't have to be managing your weight to do these. They're great beginner exercises for anyone to try.

Before you start any kind of exercise program, check with your doctor. It's also good to know these strength training basics:

  • Plan to do strength training exercises 3 days a week. Take a day off in between to give muscles time to rest.
  • Warm up your muscles with some light aerobic activity before doing strength exercises. Cool down after by stretching the muscles you worked.
  • Know and use proper form for each exercise. Doing exercises improperly can cause injury. If you don't know the correct form for any exercises, ask your weight management advisor, trainer, or PE teacher for advice.
  • Do each exercise slowly.
  • Remember to breathe! Breathe out on the hard part and in on the easy part. Don't hold your breath — doing so can cause your blood pressure to spike and may make you feel dizzy.
  • Start out with a light weight. You want to be able to do 10 reps with the weight you're using and then feel like you could do a couple more. If you can't lift the weight all the way, your arm or leg is shaking, or you're leaning in order to do the exercise, the weight is too heavy.
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