Personalized Exercise Plan: January 1, 2011

You've decided to put down the TV remote and start getting in shape, but where do you start? Or better yet, how do you start? "If you do it in a supervised fashion, and you know what you are doing and working with a trainer and such, you can exercise in a healthy way," says Dr. Salvatore Lacagnina, Vice President of Health and Wellness.

Dr. Lacagnina says getting started can sometimes be the hardest part. But with a little guidance, it's easier. "We recommend that you at least get checked out by your physician and make sure your heart is healthy before you start an exercise program, and if not, you get a stress test done and see what's happening."

Once you get the all-clear, it's time to learn what exercises will work in your favor. "At the Wellness Center, one of the things that we do, we develop programs specifically for people with diabetes, for people with arthritis, for people with osteoporosis, so you can tailor the exercise program to the disease," explains Dr. Lacagnina.

We all know exercise is good for warding off potential diseases, but its just as important for people who have been diagnosed with certain conditions. "You shouldn't NOT exercise just because you have a disease. That's all the more reason to exercise. People with diabetes die of heart attacks, that's what the majority of them die from so they have to exercise to keep their cardiovascular risk down."

The staff at the Wellness Centers in Fort Myers or Cape Coral can put together a personalized fitness plan for you.