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www.ProHealth.com • June 2, 2003


The following are some things you can do to make sure you are exercising safely:

* Start slowly. Build up your activities and your level of effort gradually. Doing too much, too soon, can hurt you, especially if you have been inactive.

* Avoid holding your breath while straining -- when using your muscles, for example. If you have high blood pressure, pay special attention to this tip. It may seem strange at first, but the rule is to exhale during muscle exertion; inhale during relaxation. For example, if you are lifting something breathe out on the lift; breathe in on the release.

* Unless your doctor has asked you to limit fluids, be sure to drink plenty when you are doing endurance activities that make you sweat. Many older people tend to be low on fluid much of the time, even when not exercising.

* Make sure your muscles are warmed up before you stretch, or you could hurt them. For example, you can do a little easy biking, or walking and light arm pumping first.

(Source: National Institutes of Health)

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“Nothing is particularly hard if you divide it into small jobs.”
- Henry Ford



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