Exercise is any physical activity that improves or supports general health and well being and general fitness. The discipline of fitness includes all aspects of life including diet, general well being, sleep and exercise habits. There are different ways to exercise, such as aerobics classes, yoga, dancing, swimming, cycling and many other activities. A person who is fit has healthy emotions and is physically healthy.
Aerobic fitness involves high intensity cardiovascular activity, such as running, walking, jogging, bicycling, stair climbing, cycling, rowing, playing sports such as tennis, soccer, basketball and the like, and playing musical instruments. This form of fitness should be done frequently to have maximum results. Aerobic activity promotes the burning of calories and produces oxygen to the muscles. When the heart pumps faster, blood gets oxygenated to the muscles and the nervous system can then process the nutrients from the blood into the cells and body tissues. Aerobic activity can be done by using most forms of exercise equipment, such as treadmills, stationary bikes, elliptical machines, recumbent cycles, and more.
Strength and Flexibility Fitness encompasses activities which require you to use muscular endurance, balance and stability. This may involve weightlifting, sprinting, throwing a ball, performing gymnastics, stretching and pulling. Muscular endurance refers to the ability to keep doing an activity after injury, allowing the injured part of the body to recover. Balance and flexibility refer to your ability to control your body movements. Strength and flexibility are used in many activities, but some are more effective than others for increasing physical fitness.
Anaerobic fitness is a combination of aerobic and anaerobic exercise to improve performance in endurance events such as sprinting, cycling, swimming and strength training. It combines both anaerobic and aerobic systems through the action of contracting and relaxing the muscles, tendons and ligaments. Anaerobic exercise is most effective with low levels of exertion. Increasing intensity requires the use of greater muscles, so anaerobic exercise is best for those who are not competing or training at high levels of intensity. Anaerobic exercises help the body build up a reserve of energy for future events.
Flexibility is a key component of overall fitness. Most activities that stretch the joints result in decreased pain and swelling. This is especially true during the warm-up and stretching periods prior to strenuous activities. Regular exercise improves your range of motion, making you more capable of doing daily activities. Greater flexibility also results in less muscular stress and soreness.
These three components are all vital in achieving total fitness. Health experts agree that all three are interdependent and none can be achieved without the others. Aerobic exercise is vital to maintaining muscle stamina and improving endurance through resistance training. Strength and flexibility, while important in maintaining daily activity levels, are also crucial in activities that use your upper-body muscles, such as playing sports. By including all three components of fitness in your lifestyle, you will be on your way to living a better life.