Here are some very important suggestions you should know before you clear the snow.

Flickr / L.G.T.

Shoveling snow can be good exercise, but at the same time could be dangerous.

Here are some snow removal  tips I gathered from the National Safety Council and other resources.

If you're over the age of 40 and relatively inactive, you should be very careful.

If you have a history of heart trouble, consult your doctor before you pick up that shovel.

Never shovel after eating or smoking.

As you shovel, take your time.  Pace yourself. Shoveling snow can dramatically raise your heart rate and blood pressure.

Try to shovel as soon as it stops snowing.  The snow is usually fluffy and easier to handle.

Whenever you can, try to push the snow.  It's easier on your back.

Bend your legs when you lift.  Keep your back straight.

If you're running out of breath, take a break.  If your chest feels tight stop shoveling!

Keep hydrated.    Keep a bottle of water nearby.

Don't overdress.  There's a good chance you'll work up a sweat while shoveling.  Wear loose fitting clothing and make sure you wear gloves, hat, and waterproof boots.

When you finish, do some stretching.  if you need to, take some ibuprofen with a cup of hot chocolate.

From personal experience, one of the best investments I've ever made was a snow blower.

If you have a sizable area to clear, a snow blower will save lots of time and strain.