The internet has grown into a wealth of information, and it’s also a trap of misinformation, both intentional and unintentional. This extends into what people need to know about exercise. There’s no filter separating the misinformed or poorly taught from the gurus, no differentiation between facts and myths. Anyone who wants to succeed at this whole exercise thing has too great a chance of doing it wrong and failing at it.

So, quick question: Is cardio all the exercise you need to stay in good shape? Why or why not?

The answer is no. Why? Cardio helps keep your heart and lungs strong, and can most certainly help you shed unwanted pounds and keep them off. Resistance training is the other half of the health equation.

We at OHS want to help demystify this whole exercise thing so you can reach optimal health, instead of either get frustrated and give up, or develop a health issue because you’ve been doing it wrong all this time. We want to put the power in your hands to choose whether you strike out on your own or team up with a personal trainer you know you can trust. We want you to understand what methods work best and why so you can develop a healthy lifestyle that fits your hectic schedule. Ultimately, we want you to have a long, happy, healthy life.

The First Half of the Fitness Equation: Cardio
Cardio has a ton of options but it can be as simple as adding just a 15-20 minute walk at least five times a week. Your body will react favorably just to that little bit of movement. Your body craves good health. Your efforts will be rewarded with a stronger, healthier heart, boosted metabolism, acts as a natural antidepressant, and helps keep so many other aspects of your health balanced. There just plain isn’t much in a pill that good ole cardio can’t do better at helping correcting naturally.

If walking or jogging sound too boring, other options include—but are not limited to—biking, hiking, swimming, rowing, and jumprope. However, recent decades have shown that the King of Cardio is something called HIIT, which stands for High Intensity Interval Training. HIIT actually shortens how much time you need to allocate to cardio, yet reaps the same benefits faster than picking a steady pace for 30+ minutes at a time.

HIIT involves bursts of maximum effort followed by an interval of lower intensity, and then cycling between the two over a 15-30 minute period. It significantly boosts fat burning hormones, suppresses insulin levels and beats any other form of cardio in raising your metabolic rate.

The Second Half of the Fitness Equation: Resistance Training
This half is easy to overlook. It’s easy to assume it’s just for fitness enthusiasts obsessed with building muscle, and for professional athletes. The thing is, this couldn’t be any further from the truth. Everyone needs to be doing resistance training.

It boosts metabolism because your body burns more calories while at rest, minimizes muscle loss, and is key maintaining strong, healthy bones. This carries over into stronger joints, better posture, a sharper mind, decreased risk of injury, and a better night’s sleep.

Just like cardio, you have a lot of options, from using just your body weight to hitting the free weights at your local gym. Now, you will want to start off with proper instruction to perform movements correctly and avoid injury. However, there’s no need to remain dependent on a professional trainer, unless you simply like the teamwork and having someone hold you accountable, along with monitor your progress and keep you motivated.

Putting the Two Halves Together
Hopefully this explanation simplifies the whole exercise thing. Yes, there are some exercises that are more effective and efficient than others but, when it comes down to it, it’s finding something you’ll enjoy sticking with (that you can do) that’s the best answer to getting and staying in shape. You don’t have to keep up with the latest trends or undertake an expedition of Indiana Jones proportions to unearth the secrets of exercise.

Now, you might still be wondering what to do which day and how much is enough, which is understandable. It takes more than reading one blog post to become a fitness expert, which is why we offer to nationally certified Personal Trainers to get you going and keep you going every step of the way.

Check us out at Optimal Health Trainer.

What kind of support Optimal Health Trainer Clients Receive:

  • A highly certified personal trainer in their pocket wherever they go
  • A free app for iPhone and Android devices that allows them to easily stay connected to their trainer, keep track of meals and workouts, and more
  • Custom Workouts
  • Custom Meal Plans
  • 1-on-1 Attention
  • Blood work evaluations
  • Personalized supplement protocol
  • Regular motivation and accountability