Saturday, February 18, 2012

How to Workout Effectively

In order to get the most out of a workout regime, you need to make sure your workout plan raises your heart rate, builds strength and improves flexibility. This is how you should plan your workout. Most workouts are designed to achieve one of these three pillars of success. However, there are does exist a type of training that allows you to build strength and do cardio at the same time. This kind of training is known as Circuit Training.

Circuit Training
Circuit training is a workout program where you perform a series of physical exercises with very little time in between the sets. The optimum way to achieve circuit training is to set up all the weights in advance. Once you have your weights ready, begin with a bench press then move on to lat pull downs, military press, squats, leg curls, bicep and tricep extensions in that order and then take a very short rest. This set should last for ten minutes. Doing the exercises in this way gives you the cardio exercise you need as well as your strength exercises all at the same time. At the end of such a long set, your heart rate will have risen and your muscles will feel slightly sore. Rehydrate and repeat this set for two or more times depending on your level of fitness. Be careful not to injure yourself or over exert. Do not rush through the exercises in each set. The idea is to work every major muscle group and get your heart rate up really high.
However, a word of caution, circuit training is not ideal for women who have just begun to hit the gym. The intensity of the workout demands that your body be in fairly good shape to take the pressure. But once your body is in good enough shape, circuit training is one of the best ways to lose weight. It burns a lot of calories and it is recommended that you do it three times a week if your goal is fat loss.

Interval Training
One of the other ways to workout effectively is Interval Training. Interval training basically comprises of physical activity at high intensity over a period of time and immediately followed by low intensity exercise over a period of time. This cycle is repeated for optimum benefits.

  • Sprint Intervals – the high intensity part of interval training is referred to as sprint intervals. These intervals are measured by time or alternatively by distance. They may be as short as 10 seconds or as long as 15 minutes depending on the kind of exercise. A good example of a sprint interval would be running at an all out pace for 20 seconds.

  • Rest Intervals – the low intensity portion of Interval Training is referred to as rest intervals. During a rest the workout does not come to an end but rather, slows down and allows the body to recover from the sprint interval. Rest interval time is determined by your fitness level and the kind of sprint interval involved.
The idea behind interval training is to get the most out of the sprint interval. As you become fitter, you should be able to take shorter and shorter rest intervals as your sprint interval time increases. This exercise is extremely ideal for weight loss.

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