I always ask my friends what topics I should write about, what they want to know about health. One recurring topic is how do you workout? A lot of us if we were to walk into a gym, we would not know where to start. Any workout should be comprised of cardio, strengthening or flexibility. Once you know these, you can pick and chose which to do on any given day and have a great workout.
Cardio is short for Cardiorespiratory. Let’s break it down some more, cardio refers to the heart and respiratory means lungs. It makes sense now, when your heart is beating fast, and you’re huffing and puffing while on the treadmill. Any type of exercise that gets your heartbeat up 60 bpm higher than resting is considered cardio. For example, my resting heart rate is 120 bpm. I am running on a treadmill my heart rate increases to 180 bpm; thus a cardio workout. I go through periods of being a Cardio Queen; I’ll go for a run every morning. After a week of running my body is like not today Satan, we are not putting those Nike’s on. I feel Cardio can become a love-hate relationship. I would recommend alternating your workouts to help prevent burnout.
Cardio has amazing health benefits. When we are working out our bodies release good cholesterol. This good cholesterol is so badass it then goes and eats any plaque there might be. Plaque buildup can lead to heart disease. Cardio also helps lower blood-glucose, because carbs are the first to be burned up when exercising. Look at the big picture 30 minutes of cardio can be a bitch, but it will help your body from developing chronic diseases that our parents have. I think that is a fair tradeoff.
Cardio also helps lower blood-glucose, because carbs are the first to be burned up when exercising.
Types of Cardio Workouts
Don’t be a Dumb-Bell
Let’s be real we need to gain muscles before we strength them. This is something I am working on, because I have no upper body strength. Muscles take up less space than fat. I have a JLO booty, if I want it to be more toned I need to build muscle. It will look smaller because it’s toned and not fat. Beside the physical appearance of weight lifting, it also has health benefits. It increases our bone’s strength, which will help prevent bone mass from decreasing, as we get older. Osteoporosis is real and very common among women after menopause. It seems far away now, but doing some type of strengthening exercise twice a week can help us with the risk of developing Osteoporosis.
Examples of Strengthening
You got to be Flexible
Flexibility is important to include in your workout routine because it helps restore our bodies. If you are feeling burned out from the other two categories, then it is time to flex. Stretching is good for the body because it can prevent or alleviate any soreness. You can do some form of stretching before and after your main workout has a warm up or cool down. You can also do it as your main workout too. If the thought of being on a treadmill for 30 minutes is torture, then this type of workout is more for you. There have been times when I’m doing yoga and it does get my heart rate up at a steadier pace than running. There is no need to feel like you’re not truly exercising if you’re not doing something hardcore.
Examples of Flexibility Workouts
- Tai Chi
- Barre (Ballet)
I think the biggest struggle with working out is finding the right fit. If you hate doing something you won’t do it! Once, you find which type of workout you like working out will be less intimating. The U.S. Physical Activity Guidelines recommend exercising for at least 30 minutes, five times a week. It’s basically an episode of the Mindy Project. I think we all can handle that.