Be Active

Well-rounded Fitness

To be well rounded and achieve optimum physical health, you should focus on these three areas: cardiovascular exercise, flexibility and strength training.

Cardiovascular activities strengthen your heart and lungs and help your body burn calories. Walking is a low cost and convenient way to get the "cardio" you need.

As you build a "routine" be sure to include physical activities that enhance your flexibility. Activities like stretching, yoga and pilates help prevent injuries, increase your range of motion in joints and muscles and improve your balance.

The third component of any physical activity is strength training.

There are many benefits to strength training.

  • Strength training is critically important in achieving long-term fat loss and weight management.
  • Muscle is more “metabolically demanding” than fat. This means the more muscle tissue you have, the more calories you burn, even at rest!
  • Muscle is the support system for the body. It helps protect us from injury when we fall or when we are active.
  • Muscle gives shape and definition to the body.
  • Working with weights helps us strengthen bone, and prevent and / or reverse the effects of osteoporosis.

Beginning in the mid-thirties, the average woman loses 1/3 pound of muscle every year, and gains one pound of body fat. By the age of 50, the average woman has lost 3-5 pounds of valuable, fat-burning muscle and has gained 10-15 pounds of fat.

The solution: Work with weights 3 times per week, 20 - 30 minutes per session. The results will be: overall strength for everyday life activities, stronger bones, a more toned and defined appearance, less fat (cellulite), more self-esteem!

Many women are intimidated by the thought of beginning a strength-training program. Part of this is because men have traditionally dominated the weight room. For more information on how to make weights work for you or the woman in your life, check our downloadable workout charts and exercise instructions on the Workouts on the Web page.

Helpful Links

Strength Training for Women

Women on Weights

American Council on Exercise

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Figure your Body Mass index (BMI) using your weight and height.
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