• 88°

Fitness that's easy to follow

Q. I have been reading about all the New Year’s resolutions and I really want to change my lifestyle. Can you give me a step-by-step program that is easy to follow to get me started?

A. It will be my pleasure!

Understand that this will be a generic guide as I have not seen or spoken to you.

First of all, set your goals. Remember not to reach too high. You are better off to re-evaluate your goal every other month or so, change if needed, then to set it too high, get discouraged and quit!

Example: I want to lose 50 pounds.

Change this to: I want to lose 5 pounds.

One to two pounds per week is recommended, so technically you could lose 5 pounds in a month.

However, out of my experience as 24 years as a personal trainer and group exercise instructor, 5 pounds is sometimes really hard to lose — especially if that weight has been “sitting there” for a while.

Keep the 5 pounds as a goal but don’t put a deadline with it. Even when you aren’t (yet) losing weight but you are exercising, there are immediate health benefits you will experience: Feeling more energized, possibly lowering your blood pressure and resting heart rate, even lowering your cholesterol.

When we set goals here at the YMCA, I always include the mind and the spirit.

First step: Set two physical goals (examples: lose weight, exercise three times a week) two mental goals (examples: read a book, learn to work with Excel) and two spiritual goals (examples: have daily devotions, attend a Sunday school class)

Now, for the next 12 weeks, promise yourself that you are going to “stick with the program.”

(After 12 weeks of changing a behavior, it typically becomes a habit.)

When you set your exercise goal and you know you can only commit to three times a week, set it for three times a week!

Second step: Weigh yourself once a week, same day, same time, same outfit (nude preferred) Keep a record.

Third step: Start NOW! Tomorrow is always one day away!

Sample workout

Warm up 5 minutes on the treadmill or stationary bike.

Lightly stretch for about three minutes.

Do 2 sets of 10-12 repetitions of the following exercises:

Two chest exercises. Examples: bench press, incline d-bell press.

Two back exercises. Examples; Lat pull down, cable row.

Three leg exercises. Examples: Leg press, leg extensions, leg curls.

One shoulder exercise. Example: D-bell side lateral raises.

One biceps exercise. Example: Barbell curls.

One triceps exercise. Example: One-arm d-bell tricep kick backs.

One abdominal exercise. Example: Crunches.

One waist exercise. Example: Obliques.

If you have time left, go back to cardio. Remember, you can NOT spot reduce.

Stretch after work out.

If you want to work out five days a week, every other day lift weights and do some cardio. The other days, do all cardio.

Let me know how you did after your 12 weeks.

Contact Ester Burgess at 704-636-0111 or eburgess@ rowanymca.com.


Comments closed.


East Rowan High graduate killed in motorcycle crash


Political Notebook: Gov. Cooper vetoes Ford-backed bill allowing firearms at churches that are also schools


Blotter: June 21


Body of fourth tuber, age 7, found in North Carolina river


8 kids in youth van among the 13 lives lost to Claudette


Hundreds turn out for annual Juneteenth celebration on newest federal holiday


Between local champions and an upcoming state tournament, pickleball putting Salisbury on map


Business leaders hope to draw big crowd for job fair at West End Plaza


Officers cleared in Mooresville shooting


From firefighter to photographer, Brianna Mitschele is ready to capture more moments in downtown Salisbury


25 years later, runners reflect on Olympic torch’s trip through Rowan


Commissioners to consider designating Newberry Hall House as county historic landmark

Farm & Garden

51st annual Old Southeast Threshers’ Reunion set for July 1-5


Biz Roundup: St. Luke’s Episcopal Church Foundation awards grants from Salisbury to Jerusalem


Kristy Woodson Harvey: For Dad


South Salisbury Fire Department activates new weather siren


Library Notes: Meet the ‘Dare Devil Dogs’ in Week 5


Q&A with Bishop Tim Smith


Wolfpack tops Stanford falls in College World Series opener


‘Down by the Praise Pond’ shares local author’s faith in debut children’s book


Driver crashes into crowd at Pride parade in Florida; 1 dead


Search continues after 3 tubers die, 2 disappear at dam


Research from NC State professors is aboard space station


Livingstone College celebrates federal recognition of Juneteenth