It can be difficult to determine if your workout is sufficient to meet your health and weight loss goals. For many people, just making the effort to exercise for 20 minutes several days a week is good enough to provide them with basic fitness benefits. Others need a more rigorous aerobic training session to peak their heart rate and boost overall health.
Establish Your Training Goal
Everybody has different needs to optimize an exercise workout based on level of fitness and long term expectations. If weight loss is your goal, then its more important to extend the duration of your training session at a moderate intensity. Target 45 to 60 minute session 5 or 6 days per week, as this will kick start your fat burning metabolism and optimize your weight loss potential.
For those more interested in reducing risk from heart disease and improving overall health from their workout, experts recommend short burst resistance exercise routines. This type of exercise cross-trains the body in high intensity 2 minute intervals, incorporating 10 to 12 repetitions while covering all major muscle groups. Information provided by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) outlines the essential elements your fitness routine should include, regardless of your personal goal.
Punch a Fitness Time Clock
CDC experts suggest that youre engaged in some type of moderate level physical activity for 150 minutes each week or 75 minutes of more intense training. Moderate activities include brisk walking, mowing the lawn or cleaning the house, while jogging and running are examples of more intense activities.
Be sure to keep a record of your exercise sessions, as your training activities are cumulative. 150 minutes may sound like a lot, but when you break it down into 10 or 15 minute fitness chunks, youll find that the time goes by quickly. Spreading your exercise routine across multiple days and different times will also condition your body toward fat metabolism and weight loss.
Choose Cardio for Weight Loss
Cardio aerobic exercise gets you breathing harder and your heart beating faster. Not only does it provide protection from heart disease, but it increases metabolism, lowers blood sugar levels and assists in weight loss. If weight loss is your goal for training, its important to monitor your diet carefully, especially when first starting to exercise, as the body will send an unconscious signal to eat more in an effort to compensate for your increased energy expenditure.
Resistance Training for Toning and Health
Resistance exercises such as those incorporating free weights, fitness bands or the bodys own weight are excellent for body shaping, toning and improving general health. The condition of our muscular system determines the nature of our health and longevity, especially as we age so its essential to incorporate resistance training to maintain muscle tone.
Understanding the importance of exercise in achieving your physical conditioning and weight loss goals is an important first step. Once you determine a desired result, you can develop a fitness program which is best suited to your needs. Choose cardio aerobic training to maximize weight loss, resistance training to improve overall health, or a combination of both. Whichever route you take, youll benefit from the health stimulating benefits of a properly designed fitness routine.