When it comes to well-balanced fitness, simply doing the same cardio exercise or the same yoga poses every single day isn’t going to challenge and transform your body. Our bodies are made up of a cardiovascular system and hundreds of muscles that all need physical activity, which is why mixing up our routines is so important for maintaining optimal health and fitness.
We’re going to look at why curating a fitness schedule with strength, flexibility, and interval training is the secret recipe for weight loss, muscle gain, and energy invigoration success.
Dangers of Chronic Cardio
When you perform cardiovascular exercise every single day with no variation, after your body burns through glycogen, it starts to release cortisol, which causes hunger, weight gain, and muscle loss. Overtraining in this way can also cause hormone imbalance, illness, and fatigue.
Mixing It Up: Interval Training
Did you know that just 15 minutes of interval training can be as effective as 60 to 90 minutes of static exercise? Interval training refers to whole body functional movements that are done in short interval bursts with rests in-between. In between sets or individual intervals, typically 30-60 seconds of rest is included. Interval training leads to increased fast twitch muscle fibers, which increases the production of human growth hormone (HGH) and improves insulin sensitivity. This results in decreased body fat, increased muscle tone, stronger bones, slowed aging process, and boosted energy levels.
As one ages, muscle mass progressively decreases if not actively maintained. When muscle mass is lost, this inhibits movement at the joints, which leads to stiffness and pain. In addition, muscles lose their natural flexibility, which makes them more prone to tears, aches, and pains. Improved flexibility can prevent fitness injuries and falls, and improve overall range of movement, and chronic injuries, tears, and pain from working out.
Flexibility can be achieved through Pilates, yoga, hot yoga, core classes, or any variety where muscle strength and mobility are prioritized. This is incredibly important for fitness recovery and maintenance of your body.
“Stretching literally describes the properties of a rubber band. What we’re really talking about when we define mobility is, Do you have the requisite biomechanics to get into full, normal, physiologic positions? As in, can your body do what it’s supposed to do? Yes or no?”
– Kelly Starrett, Doctor of Physical Therapy
Lastly, if you want to see noticeable, outward changes in the shape of your body, like a flatter stomach, tighter glutes, and defined arms, strength and resistance training is how you make it happen. And no, you will not “bulk up.” Not only is muscular tissue more efficient at burning fat and helping you to keep weight off, but it’s also more appealing. Strong is the new sexy. Lifting weights makes you stronger, helping you to reduce risk of injury while exceling at things in everyday life, like lifting kids and carrying groceries. Strength and resistance training has been proven to also improve bone density, balance, and stability.
Fast, Fit & Fab
We promote a balance of all three forms of physical activity to optimize your flexibility and agility, strength and balance, and fat burning potential for the ultimate state of health and fitness. Your body will thank you for it!