Different forms of exercise produce different results. The type of exercise that is carried out is specific both
to the muscle groups being used and to the energy source involved.
There is little transfer of the effects of exercise, i.e. from strength training to cardiovascular fitness. That is
why it is important to have an exercise program tailored to your specific needs.
If you stop exercising or do not do your program often enough, you will lose the benefits you have gained.
Regular workouts are the key to success.
Every exercise program should start with a warm up where the body is prepared for the effort to come. It
should be gentle and preferably use the muscles to be involved later.
Stretching should be included in both your warm up and cool down, and should be performed after 3-5
minutes of low intensity aerobic activity or callisthenic type exercise.
Warm Down or Cool Down
This involves a gradual decrease in the intensity of the exercise session. Following exercise, a large
supply of blood remains in the working muscles. If it is not returned promptly to the central circulation,
pooling of blood may occur in the muscles.
As you exercise, the rate at which your heart beat increases. This is often used as a measure of the required
intensity of exercise. You need to exercise hard enough to condition your circulatory system, and increase
your pulse rate, but not enough to strain your heart.
Your initial level of fitness is important in developing an exercise program for you. If you are starting off,
you can get a good training effect with a heart rate of 110-120 beats per minute(BPM). If you are fitter, you
will need a higher threshold of stimulation.
To begin with, you should exercise at a level that elevates your heart rate to about 65 to 70% of your
maximum. If you find this is too easy, you may want to increase it, but it is better to lean on the
As a rule of thumb, the maximum heart rate is 220 minus your age. As you increase in age, your heart, like
other muscles, loses some of its efficiency. Some of its natural loss is won back as fitness improves.
The following table is a guide to those who are "starting fitness".
Target heart Rate
Beats per Minute
The pulse count(on your wrist or carotid artery in the neck, taken with two index fingers)is done for ten
seconds, taken a few seconds after you stop exercising. This is for two reasons: (a) 10 seconds is long
enough for accuracy, (b) the pulse count is to approximate your BPM rate at the time you are exercising.
Since heart rate slows as you recover, a longer count isn't as accurate.
TRAINING GUIDELINES (cont'd)