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Finding Your Fitness Fit

As seen on BlackDoctor.org

Everything isn’t for everybody.

The constant evolution of the fitness world leads to the surfacing of more and more fitness formats and if you’re anything like me, you’ve tried them all. From indoor cycling, to Crossfit, and even aqua aerobics, there are so many modalities to choose from. What’s most important is that you strive to be active, and the best way to do that is to find something you enjoy.

A well-balanced fitness routine includes cardiovascular (aerobic) training, resistance training, and flexibility. Depending on your goals, you may focus on one category more than the others. Say you’d like to improve core strength and mobility, then Yoga, Pilates, or Pole would definitely be something to look into. If weight loss is the goal, you would find a class or trainer to will help you focus on cardio and strength. Improving cardiorespiratory endurance, means perhaps going for a swim, dropping it like it’s hot in dance cardio, or training for a marathon. One modality isn’t necessarily better than the next and it’s not a bad idea to cross train, or incorporate multiple modalities into your overall fitness routine to avoid over-training, plateau and boredom. Try to be open-minded and adventurous because it could lead you to some pretty exciting activities. Below is a breakdown of formats you could try to fulfill each exercise category.

Cardiovascular Training:

There are so many gyms and boutique studios that specialize in cardio training. There’s indoor cycling, treadmill-based high intensity training, skating, dancing, bike riding, jumping rope, and skiing. Rowing is one of the best full body exercises out there and if you’re not interested in getting out on the water, you could try indoor rowing at studios or gyms that have ergometers, or indoor rowers, to simulate watercraft rowing. Places like this include Orange Theory Fitness, with locations across the country and CITYROW in New York.

Resistance Training:

A lot of gyms and studios focus on balance so in your search for your , you may have to dig a bit harder to find strict resistance training programs for groups. Some studios offer classes that are solely centered on strength-building, like Novo Body in Encino, California and ChampionTone Fitness in Murfressboro, Tennessee. Working with free weights, kettle bells, resistance bands, calisthenics (body weight), and TRX (suspension) all fall under this category.

Flexibility:

Of course, you could achieve this one on your own by simply stretching post-workout while your muscles are warm and supple, but it’s not uncommon to skip this part because . Yoga is a popular modality because while it improves mobility, it also improves strength. There are plenty of Yoga disciplines to choose from, including Vinyasa, Power and Bikram. There’s even been a recent rise of more innovative yoga classes like Chicago’s R&B Yoga. With their loaded class list and community initiatives, Embrace Yoga DC, in Washington, D.C, is also a studio to consider. Mat and Reformer Pilates, pole, and ballet also fall under this category, helping to improve mobility, strength, and posture.

So, if just looking at the explosive heavy lifting in the gym makes your knees ache or that step aerobics class has you ready to run for the hills, there are plenty of other ways to get moving. Continue to explore your options!

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