How To Train If You’re Obese

How To Train If You’re Obese

What is Obesity?

Obesity is a body mass index (BMI) of over 30. There are different classes of obesity.

Class BMI

Class 1 30.00 – 34.99

Class 2 35.00 – 39.99

Class 3 Above 40

The higher you go in class, the higher your chances of negative health problems. Such as diabetes type 2, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, coronary heart disease, osteoarthritis, etc. The list goes on really and non are good.

If you need to check if you’re obese or not. You can do this by clicking on the button below. This link will also help you workout how many calories you’re supposed to be eating to loose weight.

Symptoms of Obesity


-Shortness of breath (dyspnoea)

-Inability to sustain sudden exertion (fatigue)

-Excessive tiredness everyday

-Leg-joint and back pain

-Low self-concept (esteem, confidence, worth, etc)


– Headaches, blurred vision. Dizziness and chest pain (hypertension, coronary heart disease, angina pectoris).

-High blood cholesterol (hypercholesterolaemia)

-Severe joint pain, (osteoarthritis)

-Intense thirst, excessive urination and fatigue (type 2 diabetes mellitus)

– Reduced life expectancy

Some of these symptoms make it harder to exercise. Don’t let this put you off but you might experience some of these as you start to exercise.


Exercise has a positive effect on fat stores but there are some things to be aware of. Obese people tend to be less tolerant of the internal body heat caused by exercise, as well as the ambient temperature. This is due to the insulating effect of the fat layers surrounding the body. There’s not a lot that can be done about these effects but there are some things that can be done to minimize them. Make sure your clothing is light and loose and always stay hydrated.

Obese people may have poor balance caused by stored abdominal fat moving the centre of gravity forward. Be careful, mounting/dismounting machines, use the safety clip on the treadmill and hold onto the grab rails if you need to. If you have asthma, shortness of breath caused by exercise may cause an asthma attack. If you have asthma always have your short acting inhaler with you.

Aerobic/Cardio vascular

Increasing your cardio vascular exercise will be very beneficial because this type of exercise burns the most calories and improves heart health.

Exercise must be as low impact as possible. Running on the treadmill should never be done by an obese person and absolutely no jumping! Running generates around 4 times your body weight on your knees. If you’re a 20 stone individual this adds up to a lot. Your joints are under a lot more stress than someone with a BMI of under 25. You will just get injured and not be able to exercise, put weight back on and not go back to the gym because the habit was broken. Walking on the treadmill is fine though. Others to consider are an exercise bike, swimming or water aerobics. The X-trainer and rower should be left to when your fitter and more used to exercise.


This type of training will improve your overall strength. Which may reduce the chance of falls and moving a round will be easier. People with sedentary lifestyles are usually weak and this typically needs improvement too. Improvements will be quick and noticeable.

Excessive fat levels may restrict your range of movement. Resistance machines are typically designed for average people and might not be suitable. Leg press is usually the main culprit for this because the stomach gets in the way. Careful use of free weights. Cable machines and resistance bands may provide less restrictions of movement but are higher risk because they require good technique and good balance. If this is not suitable for you, seated or supported resistance work might be the solution but with a spotter to help you. Preferably a fitness professional.


One last thing to consider is most obese people have low self esteem and feel very self-conscious in a gym. Off peak times will be best to minimize this. Before 9pm, lunch time and 6-7pm are usually busy in gyms. If it’s possible, it might help you feel more comfortable.

The most important thing is just to start. Don’t worry about what others think, just get down the gym and start exercising. It will take time. Start moving more and eating less. If you stop loosing weight, move more or eat less. It’s really that simple. See you down the gym!