This week’s Ultimate Transformation Moment continues to build upon the basics of exercise preparation.

Once you have the proper equipment, it’s now time to get going. However, to assist you, it helps to have a system in place that prepares you and carries you through the workout.

Determine what your course of action will be. For example, will you walk three miles or 45 minutes? Before you set out, here are a few things to do.

First, you must warm up the body and get your blood flowing. You can either march in place or begin with a slow walk for two to three minutes. This will allow you to stretch the body much easier.

This brings us to the second step–stretching. In my book, “21 Days to Ultimate Health and Wellness,” I include five basic stretches, a dynamic stretch, that you can do to thoroughly warm the body up and stretch the lower back, hamstrings, quads and upper body. Stretching will not only help prevent injury, but it will allow you to perform better during exercise.

Next, have a clear plan. If you’re going to walk, know your course. Before you set out, make sure you have some water. If you can sip water every 15 minutes, you can stave off dehydration.

However, if you are drinking water the night before, you may not need it.

If you’re working out by yourself, your stopwatch can act as your workout partner. For example, if you make three miles your exercise goal for the day and you walk those three miles in 40 minutes, the next time out, you can try to walk the same course in 39 minutes. Use the stopwatch to help you push yourself to get more out of your exercise.

Finally, after your workout, cool down and stretch. A cool down settles your heart rate. Finish with a very slow walk, and focus on inhaling through your nose, exhaling out of your mouth to help your body relax and your heart rate to come down. Then, finish with a stretch. This is an abbreviated stretch, but it will help break up any lactic acid build up and create continued blood flow throughout the day.

During the beginning, middle and end of this working out, affirm to yourself the goodness of life, the goodness of opportunity, the goodness that you possess as an individual. Keep your mindset on all things positive, then your workout experience will not only help you physically, but it will create a mindset that helps you make the best choices. Mentally, spiritually and physically you become stronger and your overall outlook becomes brighter.

That’s our Ultimate Transformations Moment. Peace and be more.

Erich Nall is the owner and founder of Ultimate Transformations Training in Los Angeles. He is the author of “21 Days to Ultimate Health and Wellness.” The certified trainer, nutritionist, motivational speaker, and dedicated life coach is a regular guest and commentator on KJLH 102.3 FM’s the “Front Page” with Dominique DiPrima. As founder of Collegiate Search Youth Organization, Erich has been assisting youth in the community for more than 20 years.