With the new year on the horizon, many people are evaluating their lifestyle choices. Many of us make resolutions to lose weight, follow a healthier diet, and become more active. If you have had a sedentary lifestyle for years and aren’t used to working out, it can be challenging to get started. Here are a few simple ways to kick off a workout regime when you’re out of shape.

Walk

You don’t need to be in great shape to take a walk. Nearly everyone can handle a short walk around the neighborhood before breakfast, during the lunch hour, or after dinner. Just remember to wear shoes with good support and start out slowly. Bring a water bottle if it’s hot. or dress in layers if it’s cold. Start out with short walks and gradually increase the pace and distance.

Yoga

Yoga can be as gentle or intensive as you like. If you’re out of shape, look for a beginners’ yoga workout that focuses on stretching and moving. If you’re already physically active, look for an intensive yoga workout that focuses on fat burning. There are many types and levels of yoga classes; find a technique and a teacher you like so you’ll be motivated to keep going.

Water Aerobics

Don’t let the word “aerobics” scare you away.  Water aerobics is a wonderful way to get in shape. The water helps to lift some of the weight from your joints and provides gentle support as you move. Most YMCA’s, public pools, and college health centers offer water aerobics classes.

Recumbent Bicycle

My husband is disabled and struggles to stay active. A recumbent bicycle is a stationary bicycle that allows the rider to lean back or recline when cycling. These bikes typically have a sturdy back and armrests for added support. A recumbent bicycle is the perfect activity if you prefer to exercise inside or during bad weather.

Whatever activity you choose, be sure to check with a health professional before  beginning a new workout plan.