For most people, walking is undoubtedly the easiest, cheapest and most accessible form of exercise that can be undertaken. Brisk walking as well as gentle walking. 10-20 minutes a day is a good place to start, walk around the block, walk to the end of the road and back. Anything to begin with.
The difficulty when beginning exercise as part of a get fit and lose weight plan is that people concern themselves with "time." "I don't have time" is a common excuse. Well, if this is true, then you can give it up right now. If it is true that you don't have time then clearly there is nothing that can be done unless you can negotiate with the Time Gods to put more hours into each day.
If you are a fairly sedentary person, even just 5 minutes brisk walking is more than you do already. 5 minutes a day is more than zero minutes a day. It's a step in the right direction and infinitely better than doing none at all.
Getting it into a routine is also important. When losing weight, getting into routines is helpful. For example, you might want to do that brisk walk immediately upon getting up in the morning, before heading home for your morning coffee and shower.
As you lose weight and slim down, you will be carrying naturally less weight as you get fitter as well. To increase the impact of your brisk walking, you might like to consider wearing a heavy backpack. Nothing too extreme, just fill it with some books…or a brick or two.
If you are looking at toning up all over, you might also like to carry something in your hands. Sports shops sell wrist and ankle weights which are quite inexpensive, and these can help tremendously in toning up your arms and legs.
Some people approaching all this for the first time might feel rather self-conscious. "But I'll feel silly just walking around the block each day. People will wonder what I am doing."
Well, you might feel silly, but people will assuming little more than you are getting fit by getting some exercise. After all, how many runners, joggers and walkers have to gone past and not thought anything of it?