If you’re looking to integrate exercise into your routine, you may be wondering what rules there are to follow regarding how much you should exercise. The amount of time you exercise each week depends on the following factors: if you want to lose weight, maintain weight loss, or just stay healthy.

How much should you exercise

Exercise helps you maintain a healthy weight after weight loss surgery. Whether you’re considering gastric bypass, sleeve gastrectomy, lap band, duodenal switch or another procedure, the following guidelines will help you know how many hours a week you should be spending on your workout routine.

Losing weight:

If you have set a goal to shed extra pounds, you are likely starting to count calories and incorporate more physical activity into your day. It is important to remember that everyone starts at different fitness levels. If you can do 5-10 minutes of exercise at a time, that’s a great place to start. The goal is to build your endurance by increasing the amount of time you can comfortably (and safely) exercise. Add a few minutes to your workout every few days with an end goal in mind. Aim to exercise for at an hour a day, five times a week.

The best kind of exercise is light to moderate exercise that keeps your heart rate in a low to moderate range. Walking is good especially when you’re just starting out. Our exercise physiologists will provide a customized stretching routine and other light intensity options for exercise if walking is not an option due to previous injuries/health reasons.  

Running or another high-intensity aerobic activity will burn more calories, but it will also create more hunger. Higher-intensity exercise should be reserved until you are ready to maintain weight or build muscle mass. Discuss adding higher-intensity exercise with your exercise physiologist before starting a new routine.

Maintain weight loss:

If you’ve been working hard at losing the pounds and you want to keep your body in good shape, continue to eat well and exercise for at least an hour each day, or up to 90 minutes a day for five times a week.

Staying healthy:

Getting enough exercise combats illness and disease including cancer and heart disease. Health organizations such as the American Cancer Society suggest exercising 45 minutes, five times a week to reduce cancer risk, especially breast cancer.

The American College of Sports Medicine urges adults younger than 65 years of age to exercise 30 minutes a day, five days a week at a moderate intensity. This helps keep the strengthen the heart, muscles and bones. It may also reduce the risk of some diseases.

This lifestyle change requires dedication. If you can’t exercise for an hour at one time every day, it’s OK to break it up into shorter sessions. Break up your workouts into 10 minute increments if you have to. You can work out on your lunch break, before work or after work.

WeightWise offers proven methods of losing weight with various types of weight loss surgery. We also support non-surgical patients with our metabolic program. Contact us today for help losing and maintaining weight.

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