Sunday, April 4, 2010

Balancing your Exercise to Maximize Output

When starting to exercise, it's good to begin with just any form of physical activity. However, to get the most out of your body, you would need to establish your focus. This involves clearly understanding the different types of exercise and how they help your body. A balanced exercise program consists of the following:

Cardio: This is short for 'cardiovascular exercise'. Cardio is important because this is where most of your fat-burning action happens. But cardio (as the name implies) also helps to prevent heart diseases and high blood pressure. The standard recommendation is that each individual should get a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio (such as walking, housework or gardening) about 5 days a week, or a minimum of 20 minutes of high-intensity cardio (such as running, biking or swimming) about 3 days a week.

Strength Training: Strength training is important because it also burns some calories, but mostly, it builds and strengthens muscles, makes you look toner and fitter, and increases your strength. The standard recommendation for strength training exercises (such as weight lifting) is 2 days a week on non-consecutive days. The amount you do each day depends on your body's ability.

Stretching: Please stretch after, and not before exercise. Stretching increases flexibility and reduces the tension in your muscles that comes from exercise.

If you have any questions, please leave a comment. Join the 'Eights and Weights' Facebook group here for daily tips on a healthy lifestyle.

My motto for the week: 'Don't just educate yourself; apply!'

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