Run for your lives…literally [Part 2]

Decades of solid science confirm that exercise improves health and can extend your life. So here I will be talking about how to structure your exercise regimen to get full benefits.

The minimum exercise threshold for good health is burning 700 – 1000 kcal/week. This corresponds to the American College of Sports Medicine’s (ACSM) recommendations of 150-250 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise per week. Even 30 minutes of moderate exercise (you need to work up a sweat) per day can help prevent diseases like heart disease, diabetes, depression, and several types of cancer, particularly breast and colon cancers.

Exercise may help prevent, fight Parkinson’s disease.

Regular exercise can also help you sleep better, reduce stress, control your weight, brighten your mood and sharpen your mental functioning

Do something that you know you can follow!

Set realistic goals for yourself

Ideally, yes you should be doing a comprehensive exercise program. It is like a big puzzle, when you have one piece of the puzzle you enjoy that piece, but you do not get the whole picture. The 3 pieces to get exercise’s full benefits are aerobic activity, strength training, and flexibility training and balance exercises.

Aerobic training

I am sure we have all gotten to a point where going up a flight of stairs or a steep hill got us panting. Aerobic training will help you do everyday activities with more efficiency and relaxation. In the long run, it will improve your cardiovascular system (heart and lungs). Why is this important? It will help you get toxins out of those organs and will improve your blood flow so that you have better circulation. You will have a better quality of life as well as less risk of diseases.

Examples: walking, cycling and swimming. Start off with what you can and work your way up to the 150-250 recommended minutes.

Don’t get lazy, make an investment in your health, every minute counts.

Aerobic and weight-training exercises benefit cognitive performance, brain function, and brain structure in elderly adults.

Strength training

Strength training is not only important for those who like to have a nice form. It is also important for ladies who want strong bones (prevention of osteoporosis!) and for those who like to have a higher metabolism.

Yes metabolism is something that you can adjust.

I always hear the following statement: “I simply do not burn”.

My dear readers, exercise increases your metabolism through 2 ways. While exercising, your metabolism increases, causing more fuel to burn off (when accompanied with a proper diet, this should be fat that is stored in your body). Some studies have shown that your metabolism will remain higher than normal for 30 minutes to 60 minutes after you are done your exercise routine.

Also, over time, as you burn fat and build muscles, your metabolism will increase. This is because muscles need a lot of fuel even when we are not making them work so that they are healthy and happy. So people with high muscle mass, when compared to people of the same weight but with high fat stores, have a higher metabolism even when they are both resting.

You want to train all your body muscles to get the full effect. Do not only do leg exercises because you want to decrease your thigh size.

That is not how exercise works, your body will choose from where to pull out the fat.

Many people tell me, I never lose weight from my thighs, I only lose from my belly. Well I say, you gave up the exercise regimen too early, because when your belly is gone, your body is going to have to pull out your thigh fat stores for energy (again, when eating right).

It is best to resort to a personal trainer so that s/he can specify how you should go about training without injury.

If you want to do it on your own, you can. It is worthy to say that a new study found that the best way to burn off fat is the dynamic duo. Combine strength and aerobic training together on the same day! So after your 30 min walk, do 20 min of strength training and here are  exercises to do at home after your walk.

Flexibility training & Balance exercises

As noted in a previous post or mine, flexibility will help keep muscles elongated and tense free. It is also needed for proper recovery from strength training. So don’t be afraid to try out some yoga.

Balance exercises are needed not only to prevent falls but also to help feel more grounded and aware of our body and what is around it.

These three aspects of exercise will constitute a complete program and will help you maintain or lose weight with the proper dietary regimen. Exercise will also increase your sense of achievement since you are setting realistic goals and achieving them. This is a HUGE boost to your every day life because you will be much more focused and content with yourself.

Try out this 7 Day program things you can do at home, No GYM REQUIRED.

Exercise will make YOU happy. Try it, what do you have to lose?….. Some calories? 😀

Don’t forget to get the right support!

A special thank you for Harvard Health of which most of this post was based on.

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