Learning How to Exercise

A woman learning how to exercise, working out on a climbing frame

Learning how to exercise, taking it one step at a time

Exercise for beginners

The first step towards discovering how to exercise, or learning to love exercise, is to workout at a level appropriate for you – a middle ground between undertraining and overtraining. Learning how to exercise effectively.


The phenomenon of undertraining is rife in mainstream gyms. Members spend far too long in the gym, trying different exercise machines, vaguely picking up weights then putting them down and generally pottering about. I believe this under-activity or poor effort is a result of lack of direction and guidance.


Overtraining is not as common, but occurs when individuals equate exercise with punishment. They guarantee themselves a gruelling experience of exercise by signing up for boot camp training, or enduring a long run which cripples them the following day.

Somewhere in between

I find these approaches to exercise responsible for ensuring that people with sedentary lives dislike exercise. They labour under the misconception that exercise is, by definition, uncomfortable, time consuming and boring. And they mistrust other people’s positive experience of fitness training.

To learn to enjoy exercise, I suggest finding some middle ground, training harder than you are used to, but not as hard as you fear you have to.  This attitude will motivate you to: find the appropriate level of intensity; create an efficiency in your effort; and encourage brevity in your workout.

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