Don't add high-calorie energy bars and energy-boosting drinks to your diet because you are exercising. Unless you are training to be an elite athlete, your standard eating schedule (for example, three meals a day) should be enough to sustain your energy. And don't make the mistake of rewarding yourself with a donut because you've exercised!
Don't assume you have to do all your exercise at one time or that exercise happens only in a gym. In fact, short exercise breaks throughout the day are good for you and may be more practical, especially for caregivers and others with demanding schedules. Take the stairs, park at the edge of the lot, and walk rather than drive to the mailbox. Purchase a videotape and work out 20 minutes at the beginning of your day.
Don't exercise when in pain. Serious pain is your body's way of telling you to slow down. If your body hurts, back off. Exercise should make you feel better, not worse.
Carole Carson, author of From Fat to Fit: Turn Yourself into a Weapon of Mass Reduction, serves as the coach for the AARPFat to Fit online community.