Lifestyle Optimization Pt 1 - How to Be More Active

0 comments

Ever feel like some days you feel off mentally, physically, and emotionally? Whether it happens frequently or, sporadically it’s safe to say it’s a feeling that most of us will face at some point in our lives.
 
In recent years, “feeling off” has become even more common. Chiefly because our modern lifestyles accommodate our increasingly sedentary habits – least helpful of which is having simplified access to junk food delivery whenever we please.
 
One could reasonably conclude that these modern conveniences are actually depriving us of our natural ways of moving and eating.
 
So, what can you do to adjust your lifestyle to feel “on” again? The answer is a little deeper than hashtagging your posts with #positivevibesonly on Instagram.
 
We’ve broken our answer to this critical question into a two-part series (look out for part two on Friday!) – where we break down practical steps you can take to optimize your lifestyle and lead a better quality of life overall.
 
In this first part, we’ll get through one of the most important aspects of lifestyle optimization - becoming more active.
 
But first, let’s answer an uncommon yet important question.

What does Fitness mean today?

Fitness is a broad term, and it certainly encompasses more than just the reps you can do at the gym. It includes mental health; in fact, an increasing amount of medical research is showing that an active lifestyle is part of effective mental health management.

The problem is, these days, we’ve happily welcomed convenient services like food delivery which has wiped out our natural affinity for health foods, and taken us away from physically preparing our own meals. Further to that, apps are available for pretty much everything. They run on unlimited internet deeming movement unnecessary and anything but desirable in our minds. 

It's pretty easy to see these things have taken a big toll on our physical habits, as well. Being more sedentary has made us feel more tired, weak and languid.
Just thinking about doing extra work, or getting up for a run feels more stressful relative to our newly ingrained habits and modern lifestyle. 

The good news is, that doesn't have to be the case. Let’s explore the ways you can incorporate more movement into your routine in order to restore optimal balance to your lifestyle.  

First, we’ll talk about training, or exercise.

 

Types Of Training

Most types of training/exercise fall into two main categories – aerobic, and anaerobic.

Both of these types of training utilize different components in the body – stimulating different systems; and yielding different end-results.

A lot of people often get stuck trying to figure out “what type of training is right for me?”

If that sounds like you, you’re in the right place.

Read on as we walk you through and analyze each type of training so you can determine which one fits your goals and lifestyle best.

 Anaerobic Training

First and foremost, we have the most common type of exercise: anaerobic training.
 
The term “anaerobic” is derived from the 3 Greek words - an, aeros and bios (meaning “no,” “air,” and “life,” respectively).
 
Without getting all Grade 8 Biology on you, anaerobic training activities are simply those that do not require oxygen.
 
Anaerobic training activities are generally shorter lived. That’s because they are also usually higher intensity activities, though.
 
Types of anaerobic exercise include:

·        Weightlifting

·        Sprints

·        HIIT training

·        Jump rope

·        Rowing

 
N.B. Shorter endurance doesn’t mean less effective.
 
This type of training engages the fast-twitch muscle fibers, responsible for power output, maximum strength and visual muscular development!
 
So, if you’re looking to build strength, and quality muscle – this is the type of training you’ll want to go for.

 

 Aerobic Training

Aerobic exercise is another good choice. You may have also heard it referred to as “cardio training.”
 
Aerobic is opposite to anaerobic and thus, requires oxygen for the energy to be used during activity.
 
Aerobic training activities are indeed lower intensity but, relative to anaerobic training activities they are much longer in duration.
 
So, aerobic training = any activity that is long in duration; not strenuous.
 
Aerobic training activities include (but, are not limited to):
 

·        Jogging

·        Running

·        Rope skipping

·        Swimming

·        Cycling

 
Aerobic training can help you increase long-distance endurance by optimizing the work of your heart and lungs.
So, if you’re looking to build up your endurance or burn off extra energy cardio is for you.

 

Which Type of Training Should I Do?

Ultimately, there isn’t really a “better” type of training if it’s not put into context.
 
What we mean here, is that both types of training have their advantages in that they produce different end results.
 
Both have health benefits.
Both help you develop certain physical properties.
Both allow you to enjoy the freedom of movement.
 
Thus, it’s optimal to include both on a regular basis, with an emphasis on the one that resonates more with your goals.

  • Do you want to be stronger, more explosive, and improve your body visually? Go for anaerobic training and mix in some cardio (aerobic training) occasionally.
  • Less concerned about building muscle mass and strength? If your goal is improve your ability to walk, run or jog for longer – heavy up on aerobic training and do weight training occasionally.

 

Still feeling stuck? Try this!

Whichever type of training you decide to heavy-up on, remember that our bodies are capable of a lot.
 
If you’re looking to finally get off of your butt and maximize on just a few of the incredible things the body is capable of, try this simple workout routine two to three times a week (with at least two days of rest between each session).

Exercise

Sets

Reps/duration

Rest times between sets

Rope skipping

1

4-5 mins

 

Squats (Either bodyweight, barbell or machine)

5

6+ close to failure

2.5 to 3 minutes

Horizontal or incline bench press (either with barbell or dumbbells)

5

6+ close to failure

2.5 to 3 minutes

Deadlift (Either with a barbell or dumbbells)

5

5, close to failure

3 minutes

Rope skipping/other cardio activity

1

20 mins

 

NOTE: “Close to failure” means that the set should be challenging and get you close to the point where you can’t complete another rep unassisted.

 

This full-body circuit will give you the best of both worlds - plenty of stimulus for strength, explosiveness and muscle mass development. PLUS, a fair amount of extra cardio endurance!

 
If you stick with it, you’ll start to feel more motivated from the momentous visual improvements in how you feel, look, and perform!
 
Now, remember that movement is just one part of lifestyle optimization.
 
In part two, we’re going to go over the other (even more important) part…making the right food choices! 

 

Leave a comment

All blog comments are checked prior to publishing
You have successfully subscribed!
This email has been registered