How to get a move on

Even if you've been sedentary for many years, a slow and steady incremental approach can help you reach your workout goals.

Some people count the time since their last workout in hours or days. But you may count yours in years, maybe even decades. You know you need to start exercising to improve or maintain your health. But it's been so long, where do you even start?

The first thing you should know is it's not too late, says Dr. Beth Frates, an assistant professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation at Harvard Medical School and director of wellness programming for the Stroke Research and Recovery Institute at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital. Exercise can benefit almost everyone, regardless of age or health status. Provided you get your doctor's okay, you can start now.

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