A Guide to Aerobic Fitness
If your main goal is to improve your fitness, then this is the blog for you. The benefits of being physically fit include but are not limited to: reduced risk of chronic disease, increased energy and stamina, enhanced mental well-being and enhanced quality of life. In this blog we will discuss what being aerobically fit means, important considerations around strength training and the basic principles to follow to ensure you are progressing towards your fitness goals at Fitstop.
WHAT IS AEROBIC FITNESS
Aerobic fitness, also known as cardiovascular fitness, is a measure of your cardiovascular system’s efficiency in supplying oxygen and nutrients to keep your muscles working whilst removing waste products. By engaging in regular cardiovascular exercise, you are consciously strengthening the heart, lungs and blood vessels, resulting in your body becoming more efficient in delivering oxygen-rich blood to the muscles, enabling them to sustain activity for longer without fatigue.
Some metrics for you to track to measure your fitness are:
Heart Rate - a lower resting heart rate generally indicates better cardiovascular health. Additionally, monitoring your heart rate during exercise can help determine the intensity of your workouts and recovery time.
Time or Distance - Keeping track of the time or distance you can sustain during cardiovascular activities can be a simple yet effective way to monitor improvements. This could look like a Fitstop workout for time, running, cycling, swimming or any other aerobic exercise.
Perceived Exertion - use a rating scale to gauge how hard you feel you are working during exercise. Over time, you may find that you can sustain higher intensities (higher HR) with a lower perceived exertion, indicating improved cardiovascular fitness.
Recovery Time - As your fitness improves, you should notice a reduction in the time it takes for your heart rate to return to normal after exercising.
IMPORTANCE OF STRENGTH MAINTENANCE
Strength training and cardiovascular fitness both work synergistically to form a well-rounded training program. Although fitness and building endurance might be your primary goal, including strength training in your program is incredibly important for the following reasons:
Muscular endurance maintenance - strengthening the muscles you are using during cardiovascular training to improve body efficiency and reduce energy expenditure.
Injury prevention - strength training also strengthens tendons and ligaments, providing better stability and support for the body.
Increased power output - strength training improves your ability to generate force quickly, which can assist speed and performance when working at high intensities.
As you can see, being physically fit has an extensive list of benefits and there are certain metrics that you can focus on to ensure your fitness is improving. To compliment your cardiovascular training, strength is also important to maintain, which is why at Fitstop we provide a well balanced training program that can be tailored to suit your goals.