To improve your overall fitness, you need to perform activities that make your heart and lungs work as well as your muscles. These activities are generally whole body activities such as running and swimming and you must follow the F.I.T.T. formula. This is the most important formula for developing and maintaining fitness. F.I.T.T. stands for Frequency, Intensity, Time and Type.
Frequency is to improve fitness by performing three continuous sessions per week at a minimum, or every second day.
Intensity is the rate at which your heart rate should be working during a continuous training session and is known as your target heart rate. Because this rate varies with age, you need to work out your own heart rate. To do this, first determine your maximum heart rate by subtracting your age from 220. Ideally you want to be working your heart at 75% of your maximum heart rate, therefore 220-age x 75% = target heart rate.
You can check your pulse during the activity by finding your corotoid artery in the neck and counting the number of beats per minute.
Time of each training session must last for a minimum of 20 minutes continuously. For many people, 20 minutes is too much to start with so by doing 5, then 10, then 15 and working up to the desired time session by session in small continuous efforts is best. continue to increase 5 minutes each time and each week to get your desired continuous time.
Type of training is important to develop various components of fitness related to your desired sport or goal that you want to achieve, eg training for a fun run requires you to practice running for long periods of time.
Once you have practiced the F.I.T.T. formula in training, there are a few stages of fitness that may be uncomfortable and challenging to get through. Unfortunately reports suggest that almost two thirds of the population that start on an exercise regime give up within the first 3 months. so to get through the first three months and beyond, here are some stages to get through. The discomfort stage, physical stage and psychological stage.
The discomfort stage will last from two to ten weeks. The physical stage is when your body stops hurting during the activity and starts to feel good. Finally, the psychological stage is when people become addicted to the activity and get a mental high out of it which can take years.