LA Fitness Member Nikki runs outside for her cardio on a sunny day

Tips and Exercises to get you Back in Shape – How to get started RUNNING (or back into it again).

If you are new to the gym or returning after a long break from working out, it’s time to get back to the basics. It’s hard to resist picking up where you left off months or years ago. But attempting to lift too much, run too far or do complex exercises before you build or rebuild a solid base of strength, endurance, balance and agility can lead to you injuring yourself, or at the very least being so sore that you avoid the gym for days, weeks or maybe even altogether.

This series, Get Back to the Basics for a Tight and Toned Body, Tips and Exercises to get you Back in Shape, offers tips and exercises—from cardio to weight training—to get you through the first few weeks of returning to the gym, so you can get back into shape as soon as possible.

Cardio is an important part of your process to getting back in shape, and walking or running is a great way to burn calories, increase your endurance, tone your muscles and build your musculoskeletal base.

Here is how you can get back into a solid running cardio routine.

Cardio – Walking / Running – Concentrate on time, rather than distance or speed. Set your intensity levels to make sure you can do at least 20 minutes of walking or running; this allows your body to get used to doing a physical activity for a sustained length of time.

Week 1 – 20 minutes, at least 3 x per week

Week 2 – 22 minutes, at least 3 x per week

Week 3 – 25 minutes, at least 3 x per week

Walking is fine, just add an incline! The steepness of the incline and your speed depends upon your personal fitness level. Start at a pace that you are comfortable with on the treadmill and gradually increase the incline until it becomes challenging. If you feel like it is getting too difficult, it is okay to adjust your levels back down to a comfortable, but still challenging, pace.

Running / Jogging, START with INTERVAL RUNS. Choose a pace that you can run at for 2 minutes; then walk for 1 ½ minutes and repeat the process for a total of 20 to 25 minutes (depending on the week). Check out our previous article Interval Training 101 – Lose Weight, Get Ripped, GET RESULTS! (CLICK HERE) for a more comprehensive chart and explanation of cardio interval training.

After 3 weeks you can either change-up your running style, or choose a different form of cardio exercise to help you shed body fat and continue working to get that Tight and Toned Body back!

We all progress at different rates, keep ourselves motivated in different ways and enjoy different exercises and workouts. So don’t be afraid to add or subtract some time in your cardio, reps to your strength training or even join some group classes or a sports league. The most important thing to remember is that your body needs a few weeks as it gradually adjusts to the substantial increase of new activity and exertion. Getting back into the gym is a great choice; your body is going to thank you…Welcome back to LIVING HEALTHY!

For more great TOP TIPS and Exercises to get you Back in Shape follow our series Get Back to the Basics for a Tight and Toned Body right here at LIVING HEALTHY. To learn how CLICK HERE or go to



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