Why Exercise?!
11th July 2011
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Are you wondering how much and what type of exercise to include in your exercise routines? What are your goals: To keep your heart healthy? Burn fat & improve muscle definition? Be able to run or simply walk without getting out of breath? Here Kimberley & Larry from eKuiLibriuM personal training answer some of your questions to get you started with your fitness plans in 2011.


They can be found helping men and women of all ages and abilities improve their fitness at their studio on Foxholes Farm, London Rd, Hertford AG13 7NT or at www.eKuiLibriuM.com Tel: 0844 669 7660 e: info@eKuiLibriuM.com twitter: Kim_eKuiLibriuM


How much exercise should I include?
Current Department of Health guidelines indicate a minimum of 30 minutes moderate intensity exercise for 5 days or more offers general health benefits such as reducing the risk of premature death from cardiovascular disease and some cancers, significantly reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes, and it can also improve psychological well-being. When starting a new routine this can be split into more manageable chunks such as 3 x 10minute bouts – i.e. walking for the bus. However to prevent obesity a minimum of 45 to 60 minutes moderate intensity activity every day should be carried out. The guidelines are not designed as a temporary recommendation more a guide to what should be included as part of your life ongoing.


What counts as ‘moderate activity’?
For most it would be include things into daily life. Such as walking or cycling over driving or to include hobbies – gardening, sporting activities and playing with your children. These are great activities to start with particularly if you have been very sedentary. Once you are used to this level of activity, aim to include fitness sessions specific to your goals and make them progressive to see further change and adaptation.


What other types of physical activity should I consider?
As the population ages and we become more prone to osteoporosis endeavour to include weight bearing exercise such as walking, jogging, bodyweight and free-weight based exercise which will improve bone density and therefore reduce the risk of osteoporosis. Flexibility, balance and co-ordination are fundamental movements that we take for granted but lose as we age, or in fact sit at a computer screen for hours on end. Consider yoga and Pilates form of classes to maintain and improve this and bring about a feeling of stress management. Some people will enjoy team sports, others gym memberships where there are lots of people working out together, whereas others will prefer to work in a more private environment and benefit from 1-2-1 personal training to get you back on track. The key is to find a physical activity that you like and will want to continue going forward. Fun inspires motivation and focus, which makes you more likely to achieve your goals.


Taking this a stage further consider including the 3 key components of physical fitness into your weekly exercise routines: Aerobic, Strength and Flexibility. What does that all mean?


Definition: any sustained activity that is vigorous enough to raise the pulse.

Prescribing aerobic programmes will include the 4 principals of FITT—Frequency, Intensity, Time & Type
Frequency—above average fitness can be maintained with 3 to 4 regular workouts per week
Intensity—Heart rates are monitored –noticeable gains are seen when heart rate rises to 60-85% of Max Heart Rate. We also use Perceived Rate of Exertion, with ‘0’ effort being nothing, and ‘10’ being maximal
Time– Minimum length of time for aerobic benefit is 15-20minutes.
Type– Vigorous, continuous & rhythmic activities, such as: Cycling; Rowing; Running; Walking; Stepping; Boxing carried out at a sustained rate will provide the best aerobic benefit

Definition:exercises that work specific muscles by resistance/repetitions, like lifting weights or own body weight.

Resistance training can be used for one or more of the following purposes—to::
Increase strength-the ability to exert force. 8-12reps/2-3sets/slow control/2-3min rest
Improve power-the ability to exert force in a short period of time. 4-8reps/3-6sets/fast/3-5min rest
Add lean body tissue-the hypertrophy of muscle to increase size. 6-20reps/3-5sets/slow/1-2min rest
Improve muscular endurance-the capacity of a muscle/group to keep contracting efficiently over extended
period of time. 15-30reps/2-3sets/med/minimal rest
Resistance training regimes are different for each requirement, as listed above, but they can also be combined:

Definition: the possible range of motion or movement of a joint or group of joints.

Through regular stretching the muscles capacity to extend fully is increased, thus allowing the joint a greater range of motion. Without regular stretching muscles tend to lose their flexibility, which can lead reduced range of movement and muscle injury. Factors affecting flexibility include: Exercise—more active people tend to be more flexible. Age—stiffness is associated with ageing as elasticity is lost resulting in tighter stiffer muscles. Warming up– produces an increase in muscle temperature. Sex—females tend to be more flexible than males.
Flexibility training needs to be regular, 3 to 4 times per week. Noticeable increases can be achieved in 2 to 3 weeks.


Should I ask my doctor for permission to include exercise or activity?
If you haven’t been active or included exercise in your daily life for a great deal of time, or if you are currently suffering with an ongoing illness or disability, then we would recommend a quick visit to your GP.


Thanks for reading our blog, for any tips on fitness please don't hesitate to give us a call, we are always happy to help!

About the Author

eKuiLibriuM personal training -

Member since: 3rd November 2011

Dedicated studio for 1-2-1 personal training in Hertford. A space to take time out from your day, re-learn how to exercise, put the fun back into fitness and burn a bit of fat!

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