Benefits of Aerobic and Anaerobic Exercise

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“With the exception of nutrition, more fallacies exist in the area of exercise than in any other area of health” (Dintiman, Stone, Pennington, & Davis, 1984). Exercise produces significant physical and mental benefits and is extremely vital to life. It substantially improves stamina, strengthens and tones muscles, helps prevent diseases, enhances flexibility, controls weight, and prolongs the quality of life. In order to gain all the benefits from exercise and be truly healthy, it is very important to understand and take action with both types of exercise: anaerobic and aerobic. With the combination of aerobic and anaerobic exercise, an individual will greatly increase their overall health and wellness. Aerobic exercise involves improving the cardiovascular system. It increases the efficiency with which the body is able to utilize oxygen (Dintiman, Stone, Pennington, & Davis, 1984). “An aerobic activity is any sustained moderately strenuous effort carried on at an intensity level just high enough to let the heart and lungs keep pace with the increased need for oxygen required by the working muscles” (Fine, & Kusinitz, 1995). In other words, aerobic exercise means that continuous and large amounts of oxygen are needed in order to generate the amount of energy needed to complete the workout. The most common type of aerobic exercise is long-distance running, or jogging. However, others include activities such as walking, bicycling, dancing, and swimming. While running, the body requires large amounts of energy in order for the body to sustain energy. “During prolonged exercise, most of the energy is aerobic, derived from the oxidation of carbohydrates and fats” (Getchell, 1976). Anaerobic involves mostly sudden, short rigorous acti... ... middle of paper ... ...nters have much more red muscle fibers, which are the fast twitch muscle fibers. Distance runners have more of the white muscle fibers which are slower twitch. Due to the number of calories burned in their training and the composition of their muscle fibers distance runners are usually leaner with less muscle mass, while sprinters are usually more bulky and muscular due to their genetic make-up and practice demands (2009). Aerobic and anaerobic both have benefits which outshine the other in some aspects. To maintain excellent health, it is recommended that both forms of exercise be used in combination. The key differences to note between the two is in aerobic the body requires oxygen and in anaerobic the body does not require nearly as much oxygen to perform the exercise. With both combined, an individual can expect to be fit and strong to the most of their ability.

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