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How to Be Active at Any Size

You can get moving, no matter what your weight.

When you've been sedentary and have a lot of weight to lose, starting an exercise program can seem like a near-impossible goal.

Large folks face some unique challenges when they're trying to be active, ranging from limitations in their movement to finding clothes and equipment for exercising.

Yet the road to a healthier lifestyle must include some kind of physical activity along with a healthy eating plan. It's possible to lose weight by diet alone, but far from ideal. And research shows that people who've managed to lose large amounts of weight and kept it off tend to be regular exercisers.

The answer is to think of these challenges as hurdles, not roadblocks. And remember, the first step is always the hardest.

It's also important to find activities that work for you. You don't need to run marathons to gain the health benefits of physical activity! All you need to do is start moving, and gradually your fitness level will improve. As you lose weight, you'll be able to do more each day.

So take baby steps, and keep in mind that every little bit helps. Most people never regret getting physical activity, but they do regret it when they don't.

Benefits of Fitness

There is no question that regular physical activity is good for you and makes you feel better. Not only does it help you burn calories to lose weight, it reduces the risk of conditions like heart disease, stroke, blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes.

Physical activity improves your strength, muscles, bones, and coordination. It improves your quality of life, making it easier to do simple things like walking up a flight of stairs, tying your shoes, or sleeping. Exercise also has many psychological benefits: It helps you feel better about yourself, improves your mood, and allows you to better cope with stress.

Still not convinced? Research shows that the least fit individuals gain the greatest benefits when they improve their fitness levels.

Exercise is one of the best things you can do for your health, especially if you are sedentary.

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