About Jacques Courseault, M.D.

Jacques CourseaultJacques graduated from Tulane Medical School and has seven years of experience as a personal trainer.

He is currently pursuing his residency in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Louisiana State University.

Exercise Right!
with Jacques Courseault, M.D.

The First Step to Success: Committing to More than Yourself
How to Begin an Exercise Regimen
Walk Your Way to Better Health
How to Begin a Walking Program
Eating and Exercise: What to eat and when to eat it
Weight, Lean Body Mass and Exercise
Strong Muscles Fight Disease
How to Exercise with Disabled or Weak Legs
How to Conserve Muscle Mass During Weight Loss
How to Build Muscle Mass
How to Build Muscular Endurance
Exercise Ideas: Play Video Games!
Exercise Improves Eating Habits


How to Begin an Exercise Regimen

Exercising is an important lifestyle change that you should begin making if you haven't already. The purpose of this article is to get you from sitting in your computer chair, to the point where you are seconds away from sweating, burning calories and improving your overall health. Here are a few things that you absolutely need to do:

1. Write Down Why

As elementary as this sounds, you need to write down reasons why you are beginning this exercise program. It may seem obvious to you now, but there will be those days that you will not feel like exercising. This is a tool that you can use both now and down the road to attach a purpose with your commitment. Make a list with two columns. Label one column "long-term goals" and the other "short-term goals” For example: Long-Term- I want to lose 50lbs, and prevent heart disease. Short Term- I want a stronger immune system and to relieve stress.

2. Find a Workout Partner

Who else can make this commitment with you? It may be a friend, spouse, parent, son, daughter, etc. Exercising is much more enjoyable when you are working out with someone. In addition, you are much more likely to consistently exercise, and exercise at a higher intensity when working out with a family or a friend. Email or call someone right now!

3. Get Organized

What do you need to get started? As with taking on anything new, you should read up on your new goal. Start with my articles here on You can also learn about the Exercise Menu workout program. Next, figure out what equipment you will need to purchase. Beginners should start out with resistance bands, or very lightweight dumbbells. Using your own body weight is also very effective for introductory workouts. Then find a safe place to workout. This can range from the convenience of your living room, to the variety of exercising in a gym. Finally, buy some nice workout clothes! This will help you feel more athletic and will also help you monitor body composition by the way your clothes are fitting.

4. Make a Time Commitment

Pick a start date and stick with it! The number one reason why we don't exercise is because of time constraints. YOU are now the priority. Set a specific date and a specific time to start. In addition, do what you can to make a strict daily schedule during this first month of exercising. Example: 6pm-7pm on Monday, Wednesday and Friday for resistance exercise and 4:30pm-5:00pm on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday for cardiovascular exercise.

5. Search for Answers

If you have any questions that pertain to your particular situation, email [email protected] and I'll try to answer your question. When doing any web searches look for reputable sources such as the American Council on Exercise.