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Keeping Fit

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New to fitness? Starting an exercise program can sound like a daunting task, but just remember that your main goal is to boost your health by meeting the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Heart Association’s physical activity recommendations: 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity at least five days per week, or vigorous-intensity activity at least three days per week, and strength training at least twice per week.

Here are a few tips for incorporating exercise into your life:

  • Do it in short bouts. Moderate-intensity physical activity can be accumulated throughout the day in 10-minute bouts, which can be just as effective as exercising for 30 minutes straight.
  • Mix it up. Alternate moderate- and vigorous-intensity activities throughout the week. For example, walk briskly for 30 minutes three times a week and jog at a higher intensity on the two other days.
  • Schedule it. Set aside specific days and times for exercise, making it just as much a regular part of your schedule as everything else.
  • Be creative. A pair of athletic shoes and a little motivation are all you need to live a more active, healthier life. Use the BeFitNYC search engine to find out what activities are available to you. 
  • Make it a family affair. Take your spouse, your children, or a friend with you during exercise to add some fun to your routine. This is also a good way to encourage your kids to be physically active and get them committed early to a lifetime of health.

How to Sustain and Adhere to a Healthy Diet

  • Focus on eating a variety of healthy foods you like, rather than focusing on the less healthy foods you are trying to minimize.
  • Identify foods you tend to overeat and keep them out of your kitchen.
  • Don't restrict all foods all the time.  Research hows that when you restrict your body from certain items, you tend to compensate for what is missing.
  • Listen to your body.  Don't eat on a schedule or continue to eat when you're full.  Eat when you're hungry and stop when you're full.
  • Learn portion sizes.  Take the time to look at your normal servings of food and determine whether they are moderate or super-sized.
  • Don't fall for fad diets and quick fixes.  Make choosing healthy foods a lifestyle.
  • Determine your motivation.  The external motivators (e.g. weight loss, getting into a bathing suit) are not enough to maintain healthy eating - do it for you and your health.
  • Avoid drinking lots of calories.  Reduce your intake of high-calorie, sweetened beverages (fruit juices, whole-fat diary, sweetened coffee with whipped cream, mixed alcoholic drinks with several mixers).
  • Limit the number of times you eat out per week.

Read More Tips from ACSM

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