When most people think of Aerobics, sadly the 1980s, neon colors, and headbands often come to mind. Though some celebrity trends may come and go, serious Aerobic exercise will always remain as one of the fundamental pillars of complete body fitness. It is sometimes also referred to as Cardiovascular or Cardio exercise.
Along with strength training, Aerobic movement is critical for long-term heart and lung health and should not be neglected in favor of other exercises. In essence, the word aerobic means “with or requiring oxygen”. This means any exercise that causes your lungs to work hard and your breathing becomes labored can be classified as Aerobic.
Not to be confused with Aerobic exercise, pure isolation strength training (such as slowly lifting a dumbbell), is considered Anaerobic. Though of course challenging in its own right, it does not require as much oxygen as say skipping jump rope or jogging.
Aerobic exercise is beneficial to many parts of the body. Most specifically it strengthens the muscles involved in respiration, strengthens and enlarges the heart muscle, improves blood circulation and reduces blood pressure, improves the movement of oxygen throughout the body, improves mental health, reduces stress, reduces the risk for diabetes, and aids in weight loss.
These are all fantastic benefits that anyone should welcome in their body. All these types of movement will get your lungs and blood pumping through your veins and your body ready for subsequent strength training with heavier weight.
Remember to always stretch and warm up before starting an Aerobics workout to prevent muscle sprain. And don’t forget your leg warmers.
Joel Runyon is the founder of IMPOSSIBLE® - performance lifestyle brand encompassing performance apparel & formulas, IMPOSSIBLE Fitness® programs, and a philanthropy arm. An endurance athlete and entrepreneur - he's also the creator of MoveWellApp and owns Ultimate Meal Plans. Find out what next challenge Joel is crossing off his impossible list here.