Need Ideas to Jump-start Your Exercise Program?

We can help! This week, PacificSource Wellness Coordinator Sally Cummings and PacificSource Health Management Manager Paul Ramirez are gearing up to answer your questions for our exercise AMA (Ask Me Anything) video!

First, we asked a few questions.

To give you an idea of what makes a great exercise goal, we asked Sally and Paul some basic questions.

In your own words, what is an exercise goal?

Sally: An exercise goal is something that motivates you to keep to your exercise plan, it should be simple and relevant to your lifestyle.

Paul: For me, an exercise goal is pretty simple; any physical activity that I can squeeze in for 15-30 minutes.

What are the top three things to remember when creating an exercise goal?

Sally: I have a few rules I follow when I create my exercise goals:

  1. Keep it simple. Your goal should be easy to understand. When creating a goal say it out loud to yourself, then tell it to a friend. If it requires a lot of explaining, you may want to simplify even more.
  2. Keep it realistic. Make sure your goal is enjoyable, relatable, and relevant to your life. A goal that requires a lot of complicated changes to your lifestyle or sounds miserable may be hard to stick to.
  3. Keep it timed. Having a start and finish to your goal can really help you feel like you achieved something when you reach the goal. Then it’s easy to create a new goal that can be inspired by your previous success!

Paul: Those are great ideas. For me, the top three things to remember when creating an exercise goal are:

  1. Be specific. Have a routine or YouTube video picked out, so you know what you plan to do.
  2. Make sure that your goal matches your level of fitness. If you’re training for a half marathon but haven’t done any running, picking a routine that starts off running three miles on day one will not be fun.
  3. Include some active stretching and core workout to address your stomach muscles and lower back.

What is the biggest mistake people make when creating an exercise goal?

Paul: I think the biggest mistake people make when creating an exercise goal is that the workout is so hard, they’re super sore for a month and will never do it again. I also believe that most people tend to think a workout has to be at least an hour. Not at all. There are workouts out there that are 10 to 15 minutes, but you’re wrecked after.

Sally: I totally agree. People often make goals that are too complicated or unrealistic. From experience, I’ve learned that lofty or complex goals don’t work. You become frustrated instead of motivated. A great exercise goal is, “Going to the gym three times a week for 45 minutes.” Goals that are clear and simple are easy to attain and easy enough to surpass.

What is your personal exercise goal?

Paul: My personal exercise goal is not to go more than two days without exercise, even if I only squeeze in a 10- to 15-minute workout.

Sally: My goal is to survive the Hood to Coast relay race in August; simple, timed, and hopefully realistic!

Now it’s your turn!

This is your opportunity to ask Sally and Paul questions about exercise. They’ll answer your questions on video, and we’ll post the video on this blog on Wednesday, July 19.

What kind of questions can I ask?

As the name implies, you can ask anything. Questions can range from serious to silly, but should generally relate to exercise.

So, how do I ask questions?

Scroll down to the comment section, and leave your question as a comment.


  1. I am a mountain biker, and I know it’s important to cross train, but how often should this be done? 1 day a week? 2 days a week? Or perhaps I am fine just riding everyday?


  2. There are many workout mobile apps that help get people started on an easy workout plan. What are a few of your favorites?


  3. How do you choose a proper running shoe? What sort of strength training exercises will help with my running form? What do you do to prevent “runner’s stomach” from occurring?


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