FAQs on General Fitness

Q: "How long, how hard, and how many calories should I be burning?"

A: Exercise for approximately 20-40 minutes, until you can still talk, but not sing. You should be burning approximately 300 calories, including aerobic and muscle strengthening.

Q: "Why am I thickening around the waist? How can I get rid of this?"

A: The thickening may be a result of menopausal transition, which affects your body's hormones. You can reduce this with a consistent aerobic regiment and muscle strengthening, focusing on torso.

Q: "How do I determine my bone density? What's the best exercise(s) for my bones?"

A: A bone densitometry test is the best measure of your bone density. The best exercises are to be on your feet, with an additional full-body muscle strengthening routine.

Q: "I know I should lift weights, but I don't want to bulk up. How can I get tight and firm muscles in the meantime?"

A: Use weights that you can comfortably lift and do fifteen repetitions. Don't use heavy weights.

Q: "How does the medication I'm taking affect my exercise?"

A: Consult your physician regarding the specific medication you are taking. In general, medication can affect heart rate, water retention and blood pressure. Base exercise on perception of how you feel, not your pulse. Also, many medications require you to drink more water.

Q: "Keeping it short and sweet, what are five exercises I can do on my own, at home, without having to think too much about?"

A: (1) wall pushups, (2) one-arm row, (3) sit-ups, (4) press-ups, and (5) door stretches

Q: "I'm achy and stiff in the morning, what can I do to alleviate this?"

A: Stretch before you get out of bed in the morning, and more throughout the day. Warm-up for a longer period of time before you exercise.

Q: "Are there any fun step or aerobic class for the foot-impaired?"

A: Beginner classes at the gym and videos. You should repeat videos until they become easier and then move to the next level. "Live and Be Well" is an excellent video I made specifically to address this issue

Q: "Me, a stress test? Aren't men the only ones who had to worry about heart disease? I thought I only had to worry about breast cancer."

A: Heart disease kills more women than all cancers combined. Since women have different symptoms of heart disease than men, women should get an echocardiogram or thalium stress test.