How to choose the right exercise for you.
Have you ever attempted to run but find that after five minutes you’re done? Or, have you ever wondered why you can’t do a chin-up to save yourself but can pump out chest presses like there’s no tomorrow?
Well, truth be told, it could be as simple as genetics.
We’re all different. From our frame size, heart size, distribution of muscle fibre (slow twitch and fast twitch), age, experience and even body type, we’re all individual…
Ectomorph: Lean and long, with difficulty building muscle.
Endomorph: Big, high body fat, often pear-shaped, with a tendency to store body fat.Mesomorph: Muscular and well-built, with a high metabolism and responsive muscle cells.
This is called the principle of individuality.
But, what does this mean when it comes to fitness?
Put simply, the components of fitness can be categorised two ways, by health and by skill. We’re going to look at the health component.
In order to determine your strengths, it’s important to consider the following points:
Muscular strength = the extent a muscle can exert force by contraction against resistance. For example, holding onto an object or person.
How do you feel after performing a few push-ups?
Muscular endurance = a single muscle’s ability to perform continuous work. For example, running or cycling.
How do you feel when you ride a bike?
Flexibility = the ability to achieve an extended range of motion. For example, doing the splits or warrior pose.
Do you feel flexible when performing exercise?
Cardiovascular fitness = the heart’s ability to deliver blood to working muscles and subsequently, their ability to use it. For example, running long distances.
Is this something that comes naturally to you?
For some, one of these components can come naturally and for others, all. But, with a few simple observations, we can all gravitate to activities that play to our strengths.
By finding an activity that focuses on your strengths, rather than those areas which are more of a challenge, you could be well on your way to an even more fabulous you!
The next step.
A simple way to find the best activity for you is by looking to your past… I’m talking school, as in PE (physical education)!!
It may have been the monkey bars, it may have been netball or even skipping. Either way, the sport you enjoyed inyour youth could be the key to finding your fitness flow so consider dragging out that old skipping rope…
Our personality type and level of motivation can also provide clues as to the kinds of activities that each of us might be drawn to:
Type A’s often feel compelled to be constantly engaged in high levels of activity. They get annoyed and become easily angered if they feel others are wasting their time. They feel pressure to achieve and are competitive.
Type B’s however, are quite the opposite. These individuals are more relaxed and at peace with themselves. They are often described as being more easy-going and are slow to anger.
Type C’s keep everything bottled up inside. They internalise their feelings and anger and can easily become discouraged and hopeless.
At the end of the day, it’s all about finding something that works for you with the time you have available – and that you enjoy! By engaging in an activity you enjoy, the likelihood you’ll stick with it is far greater.
Personal Trainer, Fitness and Food Coach
Specialising in functional fitness and food coaching, Diana has over 15 years experience in all aspects of the fitness industry from personal and group training to club owner and spin instructor.