Strength Training/Lifestyle change

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Question
I'm hoping you can help me. While I'm not overly out of shape, I am a little over weight and my endurance sucks. I don't want to join a gym and couldn't really afford to anyways.
What I'm looking for is to tone my body and get some upper body strength. I've started doing sit ups and push ups but was wondering what else I could add to that and just roughly how many of those I should be doing in a day. I also have bad knees so anything that would be high impact wouldn't be ideal.
I'm also trying to eat healthier without turning into a health nut like my sister and boyfriend. Which pretty much means I want to still be able to eat junk food should the desire strike me (not a desire I get all that often any more) and not have to look all that closely on the nutritional information on a box of food before I buy it.
Any advice you can give would be helpful. I'm 24 and weigh approximately 150ish lbs (like I said, overweight but not massively so).

Answer
Hi Megan,
The information you gave me is somewhat vague but I'll try to do my best to answer your questions.  You say you want to get toned but you didn't say if you really want to lose weight or how much weight and how tall you are.  Doing sit ups and push ups is a start...how many?  See how many you can do in a row (with correct form) before you feel like you can't do any more.  This should be around 10-20 and you would rest and then try it 2 more times.  To lose overall fat you would need to do some type of cardio for 20-30 minutes per day a few days per week and you should always try to do all over body toning exercises as just focusing on two areas wouldn't be beneficial.  I would recommend something like this type of at home workout: http://exercise.about.com/cs/exerciseworkouts/l/bltotalworkout.htm
This will help you build muscle all over which will help build your metabolism.  
As far as nutrition goes, you don't have to be a total health nut but if you find you can't lose weight this is a big area to look at.  Total daily calories can have a significant impact on your overall body figure.  So if you exercise and are not losing weight then you are consuming too many calories.  Hope this helps and let me know if you have any more questions.  Good luck!

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Kristina Crossway

Expertise

I can answer any questions pertaining to weight loss, strength training, cardio training, lifestyle changes and emotional eating. I have worked with men and women of all ages including children. I've worked with women trying to lose postnatal weight, men and women with injuries and teens/kids needing to lose weight or enhance athletic skills and many more.

Experience

Having struggled with weight all my life as well as many health problems such as Lupus and Crohnís disease Iíve researched all my adult life on how to lose weight and keep it off and how to stay healthy when you are sick. I have my own personal training company, KrisCross Training, and Iíve been helping men, women and children get healthy and stay healthy for years. Check out my website, www.kriscrosstraining.com, or my blog http://kriscrosstraining.wordpress.com/.

Organizations
National Academy of Sports Medicine IDEA Health and Fitness Association Sharecare Elite Trainer AllExperts Expert in Strength Training, Womenís Fitness, Aerobics and Living with Obesity

Publications
http://kriscrosstraining.wordpress.com/

Education/Credentials
BS in Sports Management-Fitness and Nutrition Track-California University of PA MS in Health and Physical Education-North Georgia College and State University NASM Certified Personal Trainer CPR and AED Certified Venice Nutrition Certified Nutrition Coach

Past/Present Clients
I have worked with a variety of clients including high school cheerleaders and runners, men and women of all ages, as well as help brides lose weight for their wedding. I've also worked with kids and teens who want to lose weight and become more active in sports.

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