Whether you're a beginner taking the first steps toward fitness or a gym fanatic wanting to optimize your results, a well-rounded fitness training regimen is essential to get the best results.
There is no single type of exercise or workout that can take care of all your needs. So to get the most out of your routine, do a mix of activities during a week. Otherwise, it looks like a diet consisting only of fruit which is healthy but lacking many other nutrients you'll find in other foods, such as meat, vegetables, nuts, and whole grains.
Developing a Balanced Workout Routine
Now the question arises, what does a balanced workout plan consist of?
Whether your goal is to lose weight, stay healthy, get in better shape, or all the above, there are three main components to a good exercise program: -
Aerobic exercises, also known as cardio or endurance activities, are excellent for burning calories and excess fat. Walking, biking, running, and swimming are some of the examples of activities that make your heart and lungs work harder. Aerobic exercise increases your heart rate and breathing for a short period, allowing more oxygen to enter your muscles and improves cardiovascular endurance. In addition, aerobic exercise is linked to a reduced risk of several diseases and a longer lifespan.
Strength or resistance training typically employs weight machines, free weights, or resistance bands. It prevents bone loss and builds muscle. It also helps in improving your body's ratio of lean muscle mass to fat. So it, too, deserves an essential place in your exercise routine. In addition, using progressively heavier weights or increasing resistance makes muscles stronger. Strength training, in addition to toning you, gives you the functional strength you need to perform daily tasks with ease, such as carrying groceries, climbing stairs, rising from a chair, and running for the bus.
Flexibility exercises like dynamic stretching and yoga gently reverse the shortening and tightening of muscles that typically occur with age. Muscle fibres that are shorter and stiffer are more susceptible to injury and can cause back pain and balance problems.
Stretching exercises help isolate and stretch elastic fibres around muscles and tendons that help to alleviate these issues. A well-stretched muscle can reach its full range of motion more conveniently. This helps improve athletic performance and is a great way to get you moving in the morning or a way to relax after a long day. Activities such as yoga combine stretching and relaxation and also improve balance, an excellent combination.
However, note that experts don't recommend stretching before weight training or any explosive training. Instead, it is best to perform your flexibility exercises as your post-workout cool-down.
Benefits of a Mixed Workout Routine
You Will Target Every Muscle Group
Yes, daily squats will strengthen your quads and glutes, while daily push-ups will build your chest and core. However, incorporating movements such as overhead presses, deadlifts, aerobic workouts, and gym ball exercises, to name a few, allows you to work a wider variety of muscle groups. In addition, choosing different workouts throughout the week, from strength to cardio, means you're working for various large muscle groups and working out the cardiovascular system that you wouldn't necessarily hit with just a monotonous training schedule.
Break Through A Plateau
When you do the same activity daily, your body gets used to it and becomes very efficient. "Eventually, even though you do the same amount of exercise, you'll burn fewer calories as a result of the adaptation." The alternative is to push your body in ways it isn't used to. Then, when your body responds to the new exercise, it will have to work harder, which means you will lose more calories when exercising. This would help you to break through any weight loss plateau in your fitness journey.
Avoid Burnouts And Injuries
You should alternate high-intensity and low-intensity exercises when switching up your workouts. Some days, all-out strength training or HIIT-based sessions isn’t necessary. Your body can be begging for a deep stretch or meditation at times. You’ll help your body recover and perform better in your workout sessions if you include specific lower-intensity workouts. For a better understanding of HIIT, read our blog High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), How Does It Work? What Are The Benefits?
Makes Your Workout Interesting
If you find yourself counting down the seconds left in your cardio workout or can hardly lift the same weights every day, it's high time to jinx up your workout routine. Doing the same training every single day can get boring & you will end up despising it. In contrast, mixing up your workout routine with some cardio, weight training & flexibility sessions can help you to keep things interesting. It helps to keep your workouts from getting stale & makes you excited about getting your workout done.
The Bottom Line
Whether you create your own fitness training program or enlist the help of a professional, your overall workout plan should include several elements. Aim to incorporate aerobic fitness, strength training & flexibility sessions into your training routine. It isn't necessary to fit each of these elements into every fitness session, but adding them into your weekly routine can help you promote fitness for life.
Gergley, J. C. (2009). Comparison of Two Lower-Body Modes of Endurance Training on Lower-Body Strength Development While Concurrently Training. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 23(3), 979–987. https://doi.org/10.1519/jsc.0b013e3181a0629d
Mangine, G. T., Hoffman, J. R., Gonzalez, A. M., Townsend, J. R., Wells, A. J., Jajtner, A. R., Beyer, K. S., Boone, C. H., Miramonti, A. A., Wang, R., LaMonica, M. B., Fukuda, D. H., Ratamess, N. A., & Stout, J. R. (2015). The effect of training volume and intensity on improvements in muscular strength and size in resistance-trained men. Physiological Reports, 3(8), e12472. https://doi.org/10.14814/phy2.12472