Here's how to attain that 'training effect'

1 Frequency: You must exercise regularly - at least three times a week or every other day to develop a measurable training effect. 
 Four high-quality sessions per week will help develop a high level of fitness.

2 Intensity: Your exercise level must be strenuous enough to push your heart rate into its target zones - 65pc to 85pc of your maximum pulse rate (220 minus your age for men and 230 minus your age for women), depending on your fitness level. 
 You can get a rough reading of your pulse by taking it on your wrist or neck, counting the beats for 10 seconds and then multiplying it by six. 
 Note: If you work out at, say, 65pc of your maximum heart rate, studies show that you get the same training effect as anyone else who works at the same relative pulse rate, no matter what physical condition either of you may be in.

3Duration: You should start slowly and work your way up to 20 to 60 minutes of steady exercise. 
 Your muscles may be burning more than 50pc fat once you hit the 30-minutes mark, so regular sessions and a combination of sustained aerobic exercise as well as interval-type aerobic training can have a major effect on the body composition.

4 The secret of any on-going exercise routine is to spend some time with a trainer to get a tailored programme designed specifically for you, rather than wasting time in the gym doing exercises that are not going to get results. 
 Don't spend all of your time on the bike, cross-trainer or treadmill. This will not get you the optimum results. So invest in yourself.

5 With any exercise programme, you have to realise that diet is 60 to 80pc of your success. If you don't watch your diet, the results won't show. 
 So, simply stay on the programme, watch your diet and do a good balance of cardio and weight-training.