Considering a New Exercise Program? When to Check-In With Your Doctor First

Considering a new workout program? Is it time for you to get active?

We hear over and over again that being physically active is good for us; it can help manage your weight, strengthen your muscles and bones, and reduce your risk of certain diseases such as heart disease. Before beginning a new exercise program it is often crucial to check in with your Michigan physician, especially if you’re considering weight loss surgery.

Increasing your activity level in small increments is a great way to burn more calories and encourage weight loss, especially as you are preparing for bariatric surgery. Once you undergo weight loss surgery, follow your surgeon’s orders regarding what amount of physical activity is okay.

Health experts suggest you check with your doctor before you begin a new exercise program if you have any of the following conditions:

  • Diabetes
  • Liver disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Heart disease
  • Asthma
  • Lung Disease
  • Arthritis

Even if you have not been officially diagnosed with the above conditions, if you have any of the following symptoms suggestive of lung, heart, or other serious disease, talk to your physician before engaging in vigorous exercise:

  • Dizziness
  • Shortness of breath while lying down, at rest, or mild exertion
  • Heart murmur
  • Pronounced or rapid heartbeat
  • Ankle swelling
  • Muscle Pain when walking up a hill or stairs

Lastly, according to the American College of Sports Medicine, you should speak with your doctor before getting involved in rigorous exercise if two or more of the following factors apply:

  • A man over the age of 45
  • A woman over the age of 55
  • You are overweight or obese
  • You have high blood pressure
  • You have high cholesterol
  • You smoke or have quit smoking in the past six month
  • You have prediabetes (impaired glucose intolerance)
  • You have a family history of heart disease before the age of 55

If you are experiencing any of these issues, or meet any of the above risk factors, you may still be able to exercise regularly. You’ll want to find an activity that is appropriate for your body’s needs, as well as one that suits your interests. Don’t attempt to take on too much, too fast!

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