How much exercise do you have to do to actually lose weight?
When you are truly fit you feel better, move better, look better and think better, you even get sick less often.
You will perform better at work and have plenty of energy left for family and leisure activities. Studies show that fit people are more active, alert and probably more creative.
When you are fit you will feel like moving your body from morning until bedtime. You will fill your day and in doing so produce much more time. Thus it is no surprise that unfit people believe they cannot find the time to exercise.
Many people have misconceptions that lifting a few weights here and there, or running a few miles now and then translates into a fit lifestyle. It’s not that simple.
For example, even a weight lifter, while strengthening his or her muscles may not be in overall good physical condition if this is not supplemented with flexibility and cardiorespiratory endurance activities.
On the other hand the person who runs long distances several times a week may be in excellent cardiorespiratory condition but may be ignoring muscular and flexibility development.
There are four main components of ‘total fitness’:
Sometimes referred to as aerobic capacity. Increasing your ability to efficiently transport oxygen and nutrients to working muscles attains it.
2. Muscle strength and endurance:
Training your muscles to efficiently transform chemical energy into mechanical energy and help rid themselves of waste products.
Conditioning muscles, tendons and ligaments to allow joints to be moved normally through the entire range of motion.
4. Optimum Body
This represents the proportion of fat tissue weight and lean body mass in your body.
Vigorous exercise stresses the body so that it adapts and improves. It responds to this stress of exercise with certain predictable changes in the body’s physical and psychological make-up.
The phenomenon of stress adaption is called “the training effect” and is the basis of any successful fitness programme.
The training effect is marvellously simple in principle: Ask the body to do more and it will, within reason, respond. Overall whichever part of the body you want to improve, overload it progressively – and it will develop increased capacity and efficiently.
Your workout frequency, intensity and duration must reach a certain level before you notice the difference the “training effect” makes.
It is at this time that you will begin to “feel” like you are getting in better shape. The rule of thumb is you will notice the “training effect” when you are burning over 2,000 calories per week by exercising, use the chart below to measure.
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Burn, baby burn
Here are the average calories spent per hour by a 68kg or 10 and a half stone person. (Source: The American Heart Association)
l Weight training 700 cals
l Walking 5km/h 320 cals
l Cycling 20km/h 410 cals
l Jogging 11km/h 920 cals
l Jogging 8k/h 740 cals
l Rowing (moderate) 600 cals
l Skipping rope 750 cals
l Running 16km/h 1,280 cals
l Treadmill running 650 cals
l Swimming 50 m/min 420 cals
l Walking 6.5 km/h 440 cals
l Tennis-singles/hour 400 cals
l Walking 5 km/h 320 cals