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RE: [IP] Getting back into shape

I think it's really helpful to find an exercise partner: 
someone who's in about the same shape as you are,
who commits to exercise with you on a regular basis.
This gives you extra motivation to stick to your schedule
("well, Joanie's going, so I guess I can't back out tonight"),
and if it's someone you enjoy spending time with, it's 
more fun, too.

Just getting more little bits of exercise into your day can
help a lot, too. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, etc.

You said something in your post about feeling intimidated
about getting back to working out because you were in 
such bad shape. My experience has been that most people
in gyms, on walking trails, etc., are really supportive of 
anyone who's trying to get into better shape (if they notice 
you at all). 

Personal testimony:

Last year, owing to a lot of life changes (between late
April and the end of June, my husband and I bought 
a house and moved, we both changed jobs, and my 
father-in-law died), I quit going to the gym for a while. 
I have a longer commute than I used to, and that extra
45-60 minutes a day in transit often came out of my
exercise schedule. Then I hurt my back and was feeling
pretty demoralized about getting back to regular exercise,
even though I needed it more than ever. Finally, my 
husband and I made an agreement to go to the gym 
together three times a week, which we've been doing
since November. I also made a resolution to get back
to regular lunchtime walks; forming a little informal
lunchtime walking group with some of my coworkers
helped a lot. All I can say is that it's really paid off. I 
feel much better, and it's been fun. I still have a ways 
to go, but it's amazing what even three months of 
regular exercise will do.

/Janet L.

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