Once you have determined that you want to become fit, you will want to begin your fitness routine. The way you get started will ultimately depend on your personal goals and your current level of fitness. Although most people think of classes and specific activities (such as jogging or tennis) as the way to fitness, there are many other variables in which you can work activity into your life. Consistent frequency, intensity, and duration is the key to success!
Most clients begin with personal training for a series of 24 sessions. This is where you will work with me to build your general fitness base, gain familiarity with movements and see improvements in your cardiovascular endurance as well as muscular strength and endurance gains. You will find the greatest success with personal training if your needs or goals include:
- weight loss and improved body composition
- extra accountability
- you have generally been sedentary
- you are new to exercise
- you are referred to us by a physician, physical therapist or chiropractor
- you have specific performance oriented goals (triathlon, basketball, etc.)
- you have significant health or orthopedic issues
Regardless of the needs or goals the following principles will be applied to all programs of training and conditioning to minimize the likelihood of injury:
Each client will take the time to do an appropriate warm-up before engaging in any activity. And will be asked to not neglect the cool-down period after the session.
Client’s/athlete’s who hire a personal trainer are generally motivated to work hard because they want to be successful in reaching their fitness goals and/or their sport. By varying the training program and structuring training into phases, we can keep the program enjoyable rather than routine and boring.
To improve in any psychological component, the system must work harder than it is accustomed to working. This defines the SAID principle, which directly relates to the principle of overload. SAID is an acronym for specific adaptions to imposed demands. The SAID principle states that when the body is subjected to stresses and overloads of varying intensities, it will gradually adapt over time to overcome whatever demands are placed on it. Although overload is a critical factor in training and conditioning, I assure you that the stress will not be great enough to produce damage or injury before your body has a chance to adjust specifically to the increased demands.
All client’s/athlete’s must engage in a training and conditioning program on a consistent regularly scheduled basis if training is to be effective.
Overtime the intensity of the work rather than the quantity will be stressed gradually and within the individuals ability to increasing workloads.
Specific goals for each individuals training program will be identified. The program will be designed to address specific components of fitness (i.e., strength, flexibility, cardiovascular/respiratory endurance relative to the goal of the individual.
It defines the amount of effort that will be invested in your training program or any one session.
In order to enhance your performance you have to first become psychologically stronger, mentally stronger THEN physically stronger. Expect to be challenged as close to your psychological limits as you can.
If the top 8 principles have you scared a bit, don’t be. I will take the time to educate you regarding proper techniques, how you should feel during the workout, and when you should push harder or back off. Safety always comes first.
We train as often as I see necessary to reach your goals as quickly as possible. For some clients that means we train 2x’s per day 3- 4 times per week, for others it means we train 5 days per week once per day, and anything in between. For maintenance we train 2 days per week.
In other words, we will do whatever it takes and train as often as it takes to complete the program in the desired time frame. You just have to bring an open mind and the will to change your perception of what is fit. Fear of change steals your potential. Get inspired!! Tough times don’t last forever, tough people do.
Benefits of Improved Fitness
Increased levels of fitness contribute greatly to the quality of one’s life. Some possible benefits include:
- Increased fat metabolism
- Reduced body fat and increased lean tissue
- Stronger bones, tendons, and ligaments
- Increased muscular endurance
- Improved muscular strength
- Increased muscle tone
- Positive outlook
- Enhanced self-image and mood
- Improved emotional stability
- Reduced stress and anxiety levels
- Improved levels of deep sleep
As your fitness improves, your health risks decline and life expectancy increases. Indeed, the proper amount of exercise and fitness can often lead to optimal health.
A correlation also exists between fitness and wellness. Wellness can be thought of as a movement toward optimal health. The concept of wellness, in turn, deals with a balance of physical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, social, and occupational lifestyle considerations. Thus, fitness is itself an aspect of wellness.
Total physical fitness is actually a combination of different factors, or components. These components all contribute to a state of personal well-being. They include cardiorespiratory fitness, muscular strength, muscular endurance and flexibility. A favorable body composition also greatly contributes to total physical fitness.
Phases of Exercise
Each exercise session involes a series of phases, specifically a warm-up, an activity session and a cool-down.
The importance of proper warm-up cannot be overemphasized. The function of a warm-up is to prepare the body physiologically for some upcoming physical work. The purpose is to gradually excite the nervous system and gradually stimulate the cardiorespiratory system to a moderate degree, thus producing an increased blood flow to working skeletal muscles and preparing muscles, tendons and ligaments for the forthcoming activity.
The warm-up should begin with two to three minutes of whole body activities using large muscle groups (e.g., jogging, riding an exercise bike or rowing) tp elevate the metabolic rate and increase core temperature. Once you break into a light sweat, indicating that core temperature has increased, a period of stretching should follow.
Flexibility work is essential part of the warm-up. It is advised that stretching exercise’s should only be done when your muscles are warm. This assures optimal range of motion of your joints without imposing major risk of tears or pulls in the surrounding muscle groups muscle or connective tissue. One should always perform slow, static stretches, avoiding jerking or bouncy movements.
The warm-up should last approximately ten to fifteen minutes, although the effects will generally last up to about forty-five minutes, you should not wait longer than fifteen minutes to begin activity after the warm-up.
An activity session can consist of activities that are anaerobic, aerobic, or combined (interval) in nature.
An anaerobic activity involves high-intensity exercise of up to approximately ninety seconds in duration. The near-maximal to maximal exertion levels that characterize anaerobic activity do not require oxygen. Examples of such activities include sprinting events, resistance training exercises, and throwing a baseball.
For an activity to be considered aerobic, it must involve the continuous use of large muscle groups over an extended time period. Activity duration normally exceeds two minutes. The first ninety seconds of any activity draws on anaerobic energy sources before the body begins to utilize the aerobic system. The exertion level of an aerobic activity usually stays in a specific intensity range. All aerobic activity requires oxygen for its energy transport. Examples include cycling, walking, swimming, and running.
To say that an activity relies solely on aerobic or anaerobic energy systems would be oversimplifying matters. Interval activities often combine aerobic and anaerobic energy systems. These sessions are often comprised of alternating bursts of high intensity exertion and lower intensity periods of activity. Basketball, singles tennis, and soccer are examples of interval activities. Interval activities can also prove beneficial in improving one’s cardiopulmonary fitness.
In addition, most traditional aerobic activities can be adapted to an interval type of exercise. For example, swimming, cycling and running can mix high intensity sprinting sessions with easier, lower intensity periods of the same activity.
Many other sports and activities fall under a recreational heading. Some examples of this activity category are bowling, golf, shuffleboard, and baseball
Such activities may draw on both anaerobic and aerobic systems but also involve considerable periods of inactivity.
These activities may not contribute as much to overall fitness as the previously described types of exercise. However, modern science has shown us that increased activity levels of any degree are far more beneficial than a sedentary lifestyle in terms of health enhancement, disease prevention, and physical, emotional, and intellectual well-being.
Regardless of the activity’s nature, proper warm-up and cool-down procedures should always be used.
The cool-down is period is essential. A cool-down period allows your system to gradually return to a resting state. Such a period should last five to ten minutes.
Abrupt cessation of activity can have dangerous consequences. Blood could pool in the veins of those muscles you had been using just seconds ago. This condition, known as “venous pooling,” prevents the normal amount of blood flow to the brain and heart. This, in turn, may result in dizziness, fainting, nausea and a drop in blood pressure. Irregular heart beat and a serious cardiac episode could also result.
This activity is usually related to or similar to the exercise that was being performed. The cool-down should end with slow, static stretching in an effort to prevent excessive cramping and muscular soreness.