Use Aerobic Exercise as a Building Block

When searching for a topic to post for Fitness Friday, I saw this article and knew it was an important one to share. With the steady incline in obesity rates for both children and adults, I’m ecstatic that fitness has become the “in thing to do”. Sure, we all want to look good, but improved and sustained health is the true benefit of maintaining an active lifestyle.

That being said, people see infomercials on TV for popular fitness programs like P90X, Insanity, TurboFire, etc. and want to jump right in hopes of getting in shape as fast as possible. However, attempting to go from a couch potato to a fitness guru overnight can lead to muscle/joint strain, burnout, injury or worse. If you’ve led a pretty sedentary lifestyle and are not used to exercising, it may be better to start slowly with light to moderate aerobic exercise to get your heart, joints and muscles prepared for a more vigorous exercise or weight lifting program.

By all means, do get going on a healthty eating plan and a regular exercise regimen that slowly increases in both length and intensity. If you are new to exercise, it’s always a good idea to get a physical and consult with your doctor first to make sure there are no underlying health issues that need to be taken into consideration. If you’re ready to try one of the popular home fitness programs – go for it – they work! But if you need to crawl before you walk, try the tips in the article below to jumpstart your fitness journey with a variety of cardio activities that improve heart and lung function and use them as building blocks for more advanced fitness programs.

Coach MaShelle


Use Aerobic Exercise as a Building Block

There is More to Cardio than Just Running
— By Zach Van Hart, SparkPeople Contributor

<Photo 1>If exercisers picked a mascot, what do you think it would be? A jump rope? A punching bag? A man with a giant baseball as a head? If I had to guess, it would be an athletic shoe. A good pair of shoes can be an inspiration and reminder to get moving, whether you walk, bike, hike or enjoy any other type of physical activity. That’s because aerobic exercise, is a cornerstone to being physically fit.

Aerobic exercise uses large muscle groups rhythmically and continuously and elevates the heart rate and breathing for a sustained period. Say what? In other words, you are exercising at a faster but stable rate, as the heart and lungs try to keep up with your demand for blood and oxygen so you can continue exercising.

The beautiful thing about aerobic exercise is you can do it everyday without even knowing it! When you walk up the stairs instead of taking the elevator, when you ride bikes with your family, and when you run with your dog–it’s all aerobic exercise. The benefit list for aerobic exercise includes decreasing cholesterol levels and blood pressure, improving muscular endurance, reducing body fat, and it makes your heart, lungs and bones stronger. You will breathe easier and your heart will be much healthier.

Eventually, you will want to build up your cardio level so you can also partake in anaerobic exercise, which is exercise at a more difficult pace. This is when you are going all-out, like the 100-meter dash. Consider anaerobic the icing on the cake to good, cardio exercise. It’s important to gradually work anaerobic exercise into your workout, starting with very low intensity, especially if you’re not used to it. Doing 20 wind sprints or something similar right away can lead to injury or worse.

Here are some examples of both aerobic and anaerobic exercises. Feel free to try some or all of them out when you are ready:


  • Running
  • Riding a bike
  • Elliptical machine
  • Rollerblading
  • Swimming
  • Skiing, especially cross-country
  • Canoeing
  • Spinning
  • Even walking!


  • Weight lifting
  • Sprinting – on your feet or a bike
  • Jump rope
  • Sports like tennis, basketball, football

link to the article:

Written by MaShelle Dean
Hey Fam! I'm MaShelle, your Fit & Fabulous Coach. I'm an AFAA Certified Fitness Instructor and lifestyle blogger living in Atlanta with my husbae, Ron. The Jiggle Free Zone is the place to come for fitness inspiration, product reviews, and workout proof hair tutorials. Be sure to sign up for the Fit & Fab newsletter so you never miss my tips on living a #fitandfabulous life!