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Exercise Basics - Stay Fit

Exercise Basics

Exercise Basics – Understanding the Art of Exercise

Understanding the Art of Exercise

Exercise has been one of the most renowned ways to improve the human lifestyle and aim for mental and physical wellness. However, most of the population remains limited to one type of exercise basics, neglecting the other types from which they can benefit. Harvard Health notes four main types of exercise to target all body functions: endurance, strength, flexibility, and balance. Each has its own added benefits and works synergistically to improve health.

When exploring the options for each type, it is vital to understand the basics, advantages, and disadvantages of each one of these exercises.

Exercise Basics – Cardio Exercises

Type: Endurance

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Cardio is the most popular exercise basic that improves the muscle endurance of our body in various ways. Specifically, it increases the tensile strength of the muscles by targeting the cardiac muscles and enhancing the breathing capacity by inducing critical changes in the lungs. Cardio offers multi-tier performance levels, utilizing aerobic exercises to truly challenge the working-out ability of the human body in an ascending manner of progress. Starting from a low working threshold of activity, with regular exercise, the person switches to moderate forms of exercise with more sustained efforts and time into the workout regimen.

Advantages

Encompassing a wide range of activities like walking, running, and swimming to extremes of cross-country skiing, cardio exercises basics are well enjoyed within households and out with natural scenery. Cardio optimizes weight and reduces blood pressure levels, improving overall metabolism, graceful aging, and an overall improvement in mood, alleviating endorphin levels post-exercise.

Disadvantages are cardio-implicated injuries and fatigue. Unfortunately, it also causes paradoxically increased strain on the heart and higher blood pressure levels – most of these are due to an increased stress hormone, cortisol, in the body. It is seen, in particular, when you use only ‘cardio’ as your exercise regimen.

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Exercise Basics – CrossFit Exercises

Type: Endurance, strength, stretching

Wearing the crown of a complete all-rounder regimen, CrossFit includes many exercise basics modes like weight training, jerks, rope jumping, and others that require a gym environment. CrossFit targets EPOC (Excessive Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption) – a phenomenon that sets it apart from regular low to moderate aerobic exercises. It promotes weight loss rather than sustaining weight by modulating metabolism to shift to a more catabolic state.

Advantages

Physical effects include marked weight loss, sustained muscular hypertrophy, and improved stamina. Since CrossFit belongs in gyms, various communities provide beginners with an environment that allows them to learn and continue this as a lifestyle. CrossFit promotes a culture of physical fitness by incorporating all possible concerns.  Comes back to exercise basics.

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Disadvantages

CrossFit sessions usually last from 20-60 minutes and repetition of 4-5 times a week. People with hectic schedules rarely have enough time. Moreover, the weight loss aspect is slower and less marked. Injuries are a common problem faced due to weightlifting

Exercise Basics – High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

Type: Endurance

As the name implies, High-Intensity Interval Training is a form of exercise basics that utilizes the anaerobic capacity of the body to impart its benefits through controlled tempo and regular intervals. HIIT challenges our body by increasing our heart beyond 50% of its working capacity in short yet intense workout sessions. Exercises in this specific regimen are running, jumping ropes, and even calisthenics. Most athletes utilize this training to increase their stamina.

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Advantages

The most apparent advantage of high-intensity exercise is the rapid loss of unwanted fat and increased oxygen ventilation by combining both anaerobic and aerobic exercises. Since most workouts in HIIT require a home environment, going to the gym is not mandatory. Only three times a week is enough of a workout. Those with busy schedules can easily take it up.

Disadvantages

HIIT causes poorer muscular hypertrophy due to the decreased interval between successive sessions; therefore, muscles have less time to recover and regain strength. Enthusiastic people might overdo their part leading to fatigue and overtraining. Beginners may feel discouraged because of the endurance and adherence needed.

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Exercise Basics – Yoga & Pilates

Type: Strength, flexibility, balance

While other regimens promise short and quick changes, yoga and Pilates are lifestyle exercise basics, accommodating both physical and mental aspects of health [3]. Engaging static stretching poses with sustaining the required position, yoga and Pilates are considered low-impact exercises. Yoga covers more of the balance and flexibility aspect, whereas Pilates targets strength through resistance training exercises and flowing movements.

Advantages

The most pronounced advantages are in daily life. Some of them are back pain relief, good posture, decreased incidences of injury, increased range of motion, and better core strength. Toning muscles through resistance exercises and tools is also a desirable outcome. Improved mental health is an added benefit because practicing chest and abdominal breathing gives a healthy state of mind.

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Disadvantages

Despite such marked advantages, the process of seeing betterment is often slow and time-consuming, with little to no impact on the weight and structure of the muscle itself. Muscle tear injuries are also common.

Exercise Basics – Weight-Lifting

Type: Strength

Even though most popular workout regimens usually incorporate weight lifting, there is preference shown to weight- lifting as it shows the most marked muscular hypertrophy. Major muscle groups can be targeted separately as well as simultaneously. One gains muscle using weights like dumbbells to put them under stress. The consequent response of muscle shows an increase in its size.  Simple exercise basics.

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Advantages

Despite being considered basic exercise only for aesthetic value, increased muscle mass improves glucose and insulin levels [4] and lowers the risk of various cancers and osteoporosis. The results are rapid; thus, adherence is better as the process is rewarding.

Disadvantages

Early to gain an early loss, muscle gained through weight training undergoes atrophy if not sustained. Ligament tears, pain, and muscle tears are common incidences, and sometimes, joint displacements and spine dislocation show up as serious complications. A herniation is another medical condition that arises in light of poor practice. Special equipment is required; thus, the gym becomes compulsory while pursuing this regimen.

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Conclusion

All in all, be mindful that every regimen has pros and cons – exercise is a personal choice and should be suited to one’s needs. Although having a personal trainer is highly desirable, understanding the requirements of your own body and lifestyle holds paramount importance in choosing a regimen that caters to your preference and goals and allows you to decide the best exercise basics work best for you.  Looking for a fitness gym? Try Orange Theory Fitness.

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