If you are planning on designing and implement an exercise routine, you have to start by learning how to choose workout plans that are best in line with your own needs, abilities and goals. This is essential for getting the results you really want. It will also help you avoid injury and allow for optimal improvements in endurance, coordination, balance and strength among other things.
Understanding the Key Elements of a Comprehensive Workout
Every complete workout plan includes both cardiovascular and strength training elements. This means that you will spend some portion of the workout engaging in activities that elevate your heart rate and the other portion engaging in activities that challenge individual muscles. For optimal effectiveness, your workout routine should be completed at least three to five days each week. Instead of doing both cardio and strength training on a single day, however, you also have the option of toggling between these two types of exercise on alternating days of the week. This way, you’ll never grow bored with your fitness routine.
Cardiovascular exercise is exercise that keeps the body in a perpetual state of motion for an extended period of time. Aerobics, dancing, running and jogging are all forms of cardio exercise as is swimming. This is a critical part of your exercise program if you are looking to achieve significant fat loss. Cardiovascular exercise promotes better blood flow, regulates blood pressure and boosts the metabolism.
Strength training is any physical exercise that challenges specific muscles or muscle groups without requiring you to be in a continual state of motion. This can include squats, crunches, lunges, sit-ups or pull-ups among other activities as well as exercises that are performed with free weights. Strength training builds up bone density and thus, it is a vital part of you workout plan if you are concerned about age-related issues such as osteoarthritis or osteoporosis. Strength training is also ideal for people who want to selectively tone specific areas of the body up or build strength for protecting the back, knees or hips from physical injury.
Endurance and Physical Skill
The best workout programs are designed to accommodate a broad range of skill levels. While the instructor does complex versions of a cardiovascular or strength-building routine, another person within the group will show and perform a modified version. There are even programs that come with basic, intermediate and advanced workouts. Either way, you will have plenty of opportunity to challenge yourself and progress to more complex exercises as your skills and abilities increase. Programs like these tend to provide the best value, given that they are capable of growing with you.
Watching Programs All the Way Through
It is often best to watch a workout program all the way through before attempting to complete it. This is true whether you are participating in a class or streaming a workout or using a DVD at home. This will give you a good idea of what to expect and the best ability to gauge whether or not the workout is a suitable addition to your fitness plan.