Planning and Sticking with an Exercise Regimen

Kris Berg, EdD, an exercise physiologist at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, offers people with diabetes the following advice as they plan to develop and stick to an exercise regimen. His recommendations are based on the five stages of Prochaska and DiClemente’s “Transtheortical Model” of behavior change:

Precontemplation—Educate and make yourself more aware. Read flyers in the coffee room at work, or pamphlets at the doctor’s office.

Contemplation —Get more specific information on exercise. Read articles and books, view videotapes, talk with an exercise physiologist or specialist as to what you need to do and what options you might have.

Preparation—Get a fitness assessment to learn exactly where you stand. Depending on overall medical health, one should get physician approval, which may require having a physical and perhaps a treadmill test.

Action—Have an exercise prescription prepared by an exercise specialist. This will help you to maximize safety and efficiency in getting the most benefit from your program as possible.

Maintenance—Seek variety if you are getting bored. Exercise with a friend. Train for and accomplish a performance goal. For instance, walk an hour nonstop, run a 10 K race, bench press half your bodyweight 10 times.

Also, read books and magazines on a regular basis which promote exercise.

In addition, do more of the manual labor around the house (lawn, shoveling snow, etc).

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