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Fitness 101: 5 Things Every Workout Should Include

Here are five simple things to include in your workout, to make it both safe and effective:

  1. Warm-up: Among other things a warm-up leads to efficient calorie burning, injury prevention, and prepares the body for the workout. This is true for both cardio workouts and strength training session.
  2. Cardio: A cardio workout is great for the cardiovascular system and plays a very important role in weight management. If you're sticking to weights a little cardio is great for a warm-up and for a cool down to lower your blood pressure.
  3. Strength training: This creates strength and good posture, reduces the risk of lower back injury, and builds muscle.
  4. Cool-down: Among other things a cool-down prevents blood pooling, reduces the chances of dizziness or fainting, and slowly brings the heart rate back down. Think of it as a transition from your exercise life into the real world.
  5. Flexibility Training: This maintains joint range of motion and reduces the risk of injury. Remember to stretch when your body is already warm.


Join The Conversation
nia0nia nia0nia 8 years
i think the picture's funny. I usally include strength and cardio in one workout. Strength training focsing on the upper body one day, core the next and lower body the next after that. There's no harm in doing strength training everyday as long as you allow yesterday's muscle groups a rest today. Although the thing I've never understood about the rest thing is labourers who lift heavy things every day and have big muscles - why would it be any different for anyone else?
funkygeorge funkygeorge 8 years
I'm with you kclulu, that picture is frightening.
urban-chic-101 urban-chic-101 8 years
Every time!
Fitness Fitness 8 years
I hear ya! Technically, these are five things a workout regimen should include. Honestly though, I always to a little strength training when I run, bike, and swim — like push-ups or core work, and I warm up with a little cardio before strength training.
kclulu kclulu 8 years
And can I just ask what is with the strangely photoshopped picture that went with this post?
kclulu kclulu 8 years
I depends. If you split your weight lifting routine up so you are doing legs one day, shoulders one day, chest one day etc., you can lift on consequtive days. However you shouldn't do legs two days in a row because you need to rest your legs and allow them to heal from the tears that weight lifting makes in your muscles and also to grow. I think most people probably don't workout every day so these guidelines can be helpful, but they are also a little confusing. I will often dedicate one day to strictly cardio and I will also dedicate days to all strength training, but I do work out 6 days a week so I can do that. In general I dont think you need to do both cardio and strength training in every workout, however you should incorporate both of these in your overall exercise routine.
darc5204 darc5204 8 years
I completely disagree. These are 5 elements in every workout regimen, not every workout. There is no reason you can't do cardio and strength on different days.
Spectra Spectra 8 years
I generally do my workouts in smaller bursts throughout the day...I'll do my cardio with a warm up and cool down and then later on, I'll do a warm up and then do strength and flexibility training. I don't do the strength training every day though; I do about 4 workouts a week so my muscles can regenerate. You CAN do strength training every day, you just have to alternate upper and lower body work.
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