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Setting Your Goals on Fitness

Strength Training and Flexibility

Train each major muscle group two to three times per week, a minimum of one set of eight to 12 repetitions.

Lightly stretch the muscle groups used during your activity for eight to 12 seconds prior to exercise, and all major muscle groups for 20 seconds or longer post-exercise. The best way to rate one's ideal range is to take a stretch to the point of slight discomfort and hold the position, while avoiding any sensation of pain.

Charting Your Progress

Once you have decided on your overall fitness goal and your weekly workout plan, you need to log it, to make sure that you are sticking to the program. Your fitness chart should also include some reminders of where you started and how far you have come.

For example, if your goal is weight loss, jot down your weekly weight or measurements. If you're trying to improve your muscle tone, take some pictures or make notes to size up what is happening over the designated training period.

Don't be discouraged if you miss an intended workout or have a bad week. Instead, work harder the following week. And keep in mind that staying fit is a lifelong process that takes place in small, daily steps.

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