It is crucial to be familiar with the five components of fitness when planning an exercise program. Also, understand how your training influences them. These components are: cardiorespiratory endurance; muscular strength; muscular endurance; flexibility; and body composition. To be healthy, you must have a good level of fitness in each of these five areas.
This part of fitness depends on the functioning of your heart and lungs. They must function properly to transport oxygen to your tissues, as well as remove metabolic waste products. Cardiorespiratory endurance is achieved through repetitive, dynamic, and long-lasting movements that use major muscle groups. This component is improved by running, biking, swimming, hiking and other activities.
Although there are five components to fitness, muscle strength and endurance can all be included in muscular fitness. Each component focuses on strengthening your neuromuscular system. However, they are done in different ways. Muscular strength is the maximum force that a muscle can generate at once. Also known as a one-repeat maximum, it refers to how strong a muscle can be. For a few repetitions, you can make your muscles stronger by lifting heavier weights. You can focus your muscular strength on loaded squats and leg press.
Muscular endurance is the muscle’s ability to resist fatigue and exert a submaximal amount force. It is simply a measurement of the muscle’s endurance to repeated or prolonged contractions. Muscular endurance training requires that you perform many repetitions with a lighter weight than what you would normally use to build muscle strength. Pushups, pull-ups and sit-ups are all common exercises to test muscular endurance. All of these should be done until you feel fatigued.
Even if you don’t train for endurance or muscular strength, they are essential for everyday living. For example, you must have muscular strength to lift boxes or move furniture. Your leg muscles should be strong enough to allow you to walk for long distances. Your core muscles must be “on” in order to support your posture while standing and seated.
Flexibility refers to the ability of your joints and muscles to move in a wide range of motion. Flexibility is a key component of fitness. It prevents muscular imbalances and allows you move with ease. Static stretching (holding a stretch from 30-60 seconds to increase flexibility) and dynamic stretching (holding the stretch for several seconds and then repeating multiple times). The type of flexibility training you do will affect your heart rate response. In general, your heart beat will be slightly higher than your resting rate.
Body composition is the last component of physical fitness. It refers to your body’s ratio of fat mass to non-fat mass (such as muscle, bones, and other organs) within your body. A lower percentage of body fat and a higher level of lean mass will improve your overall health. Your heart rate does not necessarily reflect your body fat percentage. However, you can use the maxgainsfitness belt to train to make changes in your body composition. (More on this in a future blog).