Exercise: Variety is the ‘Spice of Life’
The experts say to build an exercise habit that will last a lifetime, look for an activity you really enjoy and then team up with others who provide you with social interaction during your workout and reward and motivation to continue the process.
“If you haven’t found something which is pleasurable, either the activity or the people you’re doing it with, then you don’t have much reason to continue it. When people start viewing exercise as a duty or obligation, then that’s not a formula for sustained activity. That just puts people in a constant state of dissatisfaction.”
When developing your exercise plan, variety is the name of the game.
Below ar 5 types of exercises will turn your fitness routine into a truly comprehensive exercise plan. Remember, non-exercise movement is just as important, as a regimented fitness routine. Standing up and walking whenever possible, throughout each day, can go a long way toward warding off chronic diseases and hypertension.
- Anaerobic: This is both aerobic and anaerobic, but the research shows that the anaerobic phase is far more important. The best way to condition your heart and burn fat is not to jog or walk steadily for an hour. Instead, it’s to alternate short bursts of high-intensity intervals with gentle recovery periods. This type of exercise, known as HIIT, can dramatically improve your cardiovascular fitness and fat-burning capabilities. Another Key benefit of this approach is that it radically decreases the amount of time you spend exercising while giving you even more benefits. For example, intermittent sprinting produces high levels of chemical compounds called catecholamines, which cause more fat to be burned. The resulting increase in fat oxidation increases weight loss. So, short bursts of activity done at a very high intensity can help you reach your optimal weight and level of fitness, in a shorter amount of time. It also promotes the production of human growth hormone (HGH), known as “the fitness hormone,” which can help you add youthful vigor to your years, in addition to promoting weight loss and improved muscle building.
- Aerobic: Jogging, using an elliptical machine and walking fast are all examples of aerobic exercise, which will increase the amount of oxygen in your blood and increase endorphins, which act as natural painkillers. Aerobic exercise also activates your immune system, helps your heart pump blood more efficiently and increases your stamina over time. But, do not make the mistake of using aerobics as your primary or only form of exercise, as you will miss out on many of the most potent health benefits exercise has to offer.
- Strength training: Rounding out your exercise program with a one-set strength training routine will ensure that you are really optimizing the possible health benefits of a regular exercise program. You need enough repetitions to exhaust your muscles. The weight should be heavy enough that this can be done in fewer than 12 repetitions, yet light enough to do a minimum of four repetitions. Avoid exercising the same muscle groups every day. They need at least 2 days of rest to recover, repair and rebuild.
- Core exercises: Pilates and Yoga are great for strengthening your core muscles, as are specific exercises you can learn from a personal trainer. Even if you are not using a personal trainer right now, you can videos for examples of healthy exercise routines you can do with very little equipment and in virtually any location. Focusing on your breath and mindfulness along with increasing your flexibility is an important element of total fitness.
- Stretching: This is important, yet overlooked by many in their exercise programs. The right stretches may help heal lower back pain, prevent injuries and improve your ability to move throughout your day.
To Lose Weight and Maximize Fitness Benefits, Address Your Diet
Carrying excess weight is ultimately a problem rooted in less than optimal food choices, not lack of exercise. Contrary to popular belief, you cannot out-exercise your mouth.
If your diet is poor, you will not be able to reap the maximum benefits of your fitness efforts, and more than likely, your weight will stubbornly refuse to fall off.
Your diet may in fact account for as much as 80% of the benefits you reap from a healthy lifestyle, with exercise accounting for the remaining 20%. It is an important 20%, but nutrition lays the groundwork upon which everything else is built.
It is important to make food choices that will help you regain your body’s ability to burn fat as its primary fuel as discussed in many previous articles.
Once you have achieved that and normalized your body weight, you can become far more liberal in your food choices.
Also remember that eating Real Food is a vital principle in making your food choices. It will help you avoid the most serious pitfalls.
So, if you are serious about optimizing your health, take the time to understand some of the finer details of what makes for a healthy diet.
In addition, what you eat, and when you eat can also make a difference. Fasting can be helpful for kick-starting weight loss, either by doing a water fast for a few days, or intermittently fasting.
Many of the metabolic problems people suffer with these days are related to the fact that they never stop eating, and the human body is designed to cycle through feasts and famines. That’s when biological processes are optimized.
To learn more, please see this article, Slow the Aging Process, Stop Eating All the Time
Eat healthy, Be healthy, Live lively