Aerobic and anaerobic exercises

Aerobic and anaerobic exercises: differences, benefits and useful tips.

Aerobic exercise is a physical activity that requires moderate effort over a prolonged period of time. This includes, for example, walking, endurance running, swimming, cycling and similar activities performed without jerks, or gymnastic exercises that are performed in the gym without breathlessness.

Anaerobic exercise is instead characterized by intense but short-term efforts such as sprints, fast running, jumps, weight lifting, ie activities during which the body is brought close to the limit of its strength or speed. This type of exercise needs moments of rest before being repeated.

What sets them apart

The two types of exercises implement different physical processes, especially with regard to the type of energy they use: during aerobic exercise the body draws energy from sugar reserves only initially, for a few minutes; Then to support the effort uses fat reserves.

During anaerobic exercise the body needs a large amount of energy and oxygen in the very short term and is forced to draw on all the sugar reserves even those of the muscles and liver. Despite this, energy is consumed quickly and the body soon needs rest, while the intense work of the muscles increases the concentration of lactic acid.

What are they for?

Aerobic exercise helps keep the body healthy: constant activity tones the muscles in general and, by increasing oxygen demands, strengthens the heart muscle and breathing muscles, leading to better blood circulation and a reduction in pressure.

If practiced consistently, aerobic exercise leads to weight loss due to the consumption of fat reserves; The control of body weight is a very important element to prevent heart disease, hypertension, diabetes and some forms of cancer. This type of physical activity also helps reduce stress and control depressive and anxious states.

Anaerobic exercise aims to increase the power of the part of the body subjected to stress and builds muscle mass, i.e. it involves increasing the volume of muscles by increasing their strength and power; It also strengthens tendons, ligaments, bones and joints. This type of exercise improves cardiac activity and reduces the risk of suffering injuries due to muscle weakness.

Who can run them

Aerobic activity is recommended for everyone if carried out adequately, that is, within the limits of what the physical possibilities and age of each allow; Performing activities such as swimming, exercise bike and especially walking at a fast pace is healthy and helps keep the body in shape.

Anaerobic activity is not recommended in old age and for those who are not in full health, and is the type of activity to be carried out with the help of a coach who knows how to dose the effort and make physical performance better gradually.

Useful tips

It is good to remember that both types of exercise need a warm-up period before starting and a final cool-down period. Let’s see what they consist of:

Type and duration of exercises Purpose
Heating 5-10 minutes of movements performed with increasing intensity or slow running Prepare the body for the effort
cool down 5-10 minutes of exercises of decreasing intensity Relax the muscles and bring the body back to rest

Joycelyn Elders is the author and creator of EmpowerEssence, a health and wellness blog. Elders is a respected public health advocate and pediatrician dedicated to promoting general health and well-being.

The blog covers a wide range of topics related to health and wellness, with articles organized into several categories.

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