When it comes to exercise, diversity is the key. As such, a personalized exercise plan includes aerobic exercise, resistance training, flexibility, and recovery. Even more, each one of these exercise categories should contain as much variety as possible. This month we’ll discuss aerobic exercise.
Why is variety important? Here are the scientifically proven answers:
- The human body is very good at adapting to new activities.Once we become efficient at a task, further improvement becomes minimal.
- Repetitive motion can lead to overuse injury. Of course, too much change can also be harmful.
- Variety improves interest, thereby motivating better performance and dedication.
- Diversity in exercise prepares us for the variety of physical challenges in life.
Aerobic exercise can be divided into these three categories:
- Steady state – low to moderate effort for 30 or more minutes
- Threshold – moderate or more effort that can be maintained for 15-20 minutes
- Intervals – moderate to high intensity for 30 seconds to 4 minutes, repeated multiple times (By strict definition, intervals at high intensity are actually anaerobic – meaning “without oxygen” – during the times that you are mostly out of breath.)
Well-rounded aerobic exercise program would incorporate at least one of each category every week. Even better, some of your resistance training could also be performed aerobically. We’ll have more on that in the months to come.