While exercise may be seen as something done to help the body function at an optimal capacity, there is more than many people think. Fitness training can be complex or simple, depending on the what you are looking to gain. However, various entities in the health sectors agree that being fit constitutes five key elements that will sum up, not only a fit body but a healthy one, too.
These elements include:
1. Cardiovascular Fitness – refers to the endurance of the cardio-respiratory system. While all five elements are important, cardiovascular fitness is the cornerstone, the pillar upon which all the other steps can find a firm footing. This particular element in your exercise regimen focuses on developing an efficient delivery of oxygen and important nutrients to all parts of the body, particularly the muscles. This lowers the chance of fatigue during and after the training.
2. Muscular Strength – is all about the optimal force, resistance, or weight that muscles can generate or support in a single effort up, until it cannot support the same without any rest. The most common fitness training done in regards to building up good muscular strength is weightlifting that focuses on various muscles in the arms, legs, shoulders, and the back.
3. Muscular Endurance – is all about putting the strength of the muscles to the test. It involves engaging the muscles in various actions that exert force, resistance, or weight for an extended period under repeated actions until the muscles get tired. In short, the training focuses on identifying how long the muscles can last while doing an activity before they get too tired to complete the activity. This might involve the use of lightweights, but most of the training will involves activities like biking, swimming, hiking, jogging, and doing push-ups.
4. Flexibility – is the body’s ability to move its muscles, tendons, joints, and ligaments to their full capacity without experiencing any pain, discomfort, or hindrances. A flexible body can handle a training session with ease. On the same note, proper training leads to a more flexible body and the reverse of this is true. Improper sessions will lead to a rigid body that will feel pain and discomfort when doing even the most common of everyday activities such as walking or bending.
5. Body Composition – focuses on the amount of fat in the body. Many people tend to associate fitness with weight loss, which does have some relevance. However, proper training focuses on ensuring that a person has the right body fat to lean body mass ratio. This particular element in the exercise training program is usually ignored because people tend to step on their bathroom scales to read what they weigh, forgetting that the actual weight constitutes of both body fat and lean body mass.
All the above five elements are fully dependent of each other. Engaging in a training session that overly focuses on one of the elements will have negative impacts on the others. Finding a balance for all five is the key to having a functional, healthy and strong body.