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Move! Intensity Matters!

Exercise is essential for both health and fitness. While physical activity is beneficial for overall health, structured and planned exercise at higher intensities can significantly improve performance. This blog explores the importance of moving and exercise, the distinction between the two, and the best exercise options based on individual goals.

Updated May 18, 2023.

What's the Difference?

Balanced Wellness emphasizes the difference between physical activity and exercise. Physical activity, such as moving throughout the day, is great for general health. On the other hand, exercise is a more structured and planned activity performed at a higher intensity, specifically targeting performance improvement.

Fitness encompasses working the heart muscle and adapting to enhance not only health but also performance. Regardless of athletic abilities, anyone can strive to perform at a higher level and improve their fitness. The key is to choose exercises aligned with your goals and preferences to ensure consistency.

Set Goals

To become more fit, it is crucial to challenge your heart and aim for improvement. On the other hand, improved health requires a different mindset and activity level. Following the F.I.T.T. (Frequency, Intensity, Time, and Type) guidelines, it is recommended to engage in physical activity most days of the week or exercise for 20 minutes at a moderate to vigorous intensity.

Use Heart Rate Zones

For weight loss, the focus should be on burning 150-300 calories on most days of the week, combined with a healthy nutrition plan. Higher intensity exercises can yield faster results within a shorter time frame.

Reduce Blood Pressure

Exercise can play a significant role in reducing blood pressure. Regular exercise strengthens the heart, allowing it to pump more blood with less effort. As a result, resting heart rate decreases, and improvements in both diastolic and systolic blood pressure occur. Exercise-induced weight loss further contributes to lowering blood pressure. Maybe most importantly, exercise helps reduce stress, which also influences blood pressure.

The Ultimate Reward

Finding the best exercise for improved health and fitness depends on individual goals and preferences. By understanding the benefits of different intensities, setting appropriate goals, and embracing seasonal changes, individuals can optimize their exercise routines and achieve their desired outcomes.