An essential element of a well-balanced fitness program is flexibility. As we age, we naturally lose flexibility, so we’ve got to do a little work in order to stay agile and spry and continue walking with a spring in our steps. Flexibility wards off injuries from exercising as well as day-to-day activities.
For example, how many times have you heard about people throwing their backs out simply by reaching for something or picking something up? Maybe you’ve experienced this yourself. But increasing flexibility can prevent injuries just like this. Of course, stretching is also very relaxing, helping you release tension – especially in your hips and back – and simply makes you feel better. That’s why we warm up before and stretch at the end of every workout.
Cardiovascular exercise is critical for burning calories and melting fat off your body as well as keeping your heart muscle healthy. Cardio exercise blasts off fat, shedding pounds. It also boosts your fitness level so you can do things like climb stairs without huffing and puffing.
Toning exercises firm all the muscles in your body, including your abs, arms, buttocks, thighs, hips, chest, shoulders, and back. Toning through strength training, using both free weights and your own body weight, is also important for slimming down, because the more muscles you build, the more you boost your metabolism.