There are many different philosophies about what types of exercise are best. It is true that depending on the results desired you may lean more towards one than the other. Getting physically active is an important step when improving the quality of your life even more so when quitting smoking. When you make the decision to get regular exercise you are focusing on a new healthy habit instead of thinking about what you are giving up when you quit smoking.
What is Aerobic Activity
This activity is also known as endurance or cardio activity. Aerobic activity engages the body’s large muscles in a rhythmic manner for a sustained period of time. Activities include brisk walking, jogging, running, jumping rope, bicycling, and swimming. Aerobic physical activity has three components: 1) Intensity, 2) Frequency, and 3) Duration.
- Intensity is how hard you work at doing the activity. The intensities most often examined are moderate intensity which is equivalent in effort to brisk walking and vigorous intensity which is equivalent to jogging or running.
- Frequency is how often a person performs aerobic activity.
- Durations is of course how long a person does an activity in any one session.
What is Muscle-Strengthening Activity
This activity is also known as resistance training or weight lifting. When performed it causes the body’s muscles to work or hold against an applied force or weight. Muscle-strengthening often involves relatively heavy objects such as weights which are lifted multiple times depending on the desired results. Muscle-strengthening can also be done using elastic bands or even body weight for resistance, such as push-ups or chin-ups. The effects of muscle-strengthening are limited to the muscles doing the work. It is important to work all the major muscle groups of the body. Muscle-strengthening activity also has three components: 1) Intensity, 2) Frequency, and 3) Repetitions.
- Intensity is the amount of weight or force used relative to how much a person is able to lift.
- Frequency is how often a person performs muscle-strengthening activity.
- Repetitions refer to how many times a person lifts a weight.
Research indicates that getting both kinds of activities each week can have tremendous effects on the body. Exercise helps to reduce injuries, heart disease, and cancer. Benefits can be seen in just a few days and in time you may be seeing a whole new you that enjoys many new things.
I think we can all agree that getting exercise several times a week has benefits. Just by getting 150 minutes a week of brisk walking can have great benefits. Just like with smoking inactivity is unhealthy. The more intense and the more frequent you are with your activity the more you will benefit, of course within reason. If you are doing much more than 300 minutes a week you better be training for the next “Iron Man”.