Using An Anaerobic Vs. Aerobic Workout

Using An Anaerobic Vs. Aerobic Workout

Not all workouts are created equal. It's obvious that some workouts are more effective than others at reaching particular fitness goals.  Every facet of a workout strategy and dietary plan must work together to form a full solution that both keeps the body sustainable and improving.  An imbalanced workout or nutritional program can and will do more harm than good.

This doesn’t only mean the types of food you eat or the frequency of your workouts. While movies would have you believe that running up a hill and chugging raw eggs like Rocky will make you the paradigm of health, the reality is that choosing the wrong type of exercises can be contradictory to any progress attempts that you make during your journey to personal fitness.

Rocky Running Up Stairs

Bodybuilders shouldn't do a massive amount of cardio or high reps if they want to bulk. A sprinter wouldn't stick to endurance based long sets.   Likewise, you need to learn the difference between an anaerobic vs. aerobic workout. Each has a specific purpose and engages different parts of your body.  They are powerful when used correctly, and so in this article, we will walk you through the main points.

What Is Aerobic Exercise

Aerobic exercise within medical circles is essentially broken down into any exercise that has a rhythm and can be done over a long period that uses most of the main big muscle groups.  Aerobic physical activity is thought of as endurance activities.

Types of aerobic exercise can include:

  • ​Swimming
  • ​Jogging
  • ​Walking
  • play
    Dance

​​​​Most of these are thought of as low intensity that requires willpower to build up over time. For many, these are the go-to workouts because they are easy to start out with and can be built up into a habit. They also have the lowest likelihood of causing outright injury.  Aerobic exercises are fundamental to increasing overall cardio health and are more accessible to people of all ages and physical capabilities.

Treadmill running habit

As much as a third of the ischemic heart disease that occurs in the United States is caused by lack of physical activity. A general rule of thumb for those that want to stave off the effects of fat gain, diabetes, and heart disease is to engage in some form of cardiovascular training for at least thirty minutes a day.

That doesn't mean that it is the best outright for general physical fitness. It is better to think of it as both a starting point and an essential component of overall physical fitness. Aerobic exercise essentially means "with breath," which means the ability to still be only slightly out of breath while working out.  Aerobic exercise is only limited by the overall intensity and the length of the workout.

What Is Anaerobic Workouts?

Anaerobic workouts are very different from their counterpart. Whereas aerobic is with breath, anaerobically is without breath. It's a workout that requires a much higher energy output. Anaerobic physical activity is any activity that is of high enough intensity that cannot be sustained overtime.

Anaerobic Workouts Include:

  • ​Circuit Training
  • ​Running
  • ​Sports
  • play
    Powerlifting

​​​​This means that the effects are more potent when applied correctly.  The removal of oxygen from the body through anaerobic activity forces the body to be depleted of oxygen long after workouts are completed and requires much more energy to recover. This means that after a weightlifting session, the caloric burning lasts for a while afterward.

Anaerobic Workouts In Gym

One of the biggest limitations to anaerobic physical activities is the requirement that a baseline of athletic capability exists. It's hard just to make a mistake.

It is easier to sustain an injury or to overexert yourself. Anaerobic workouts are more effective for fat burning when done on a rotational schedule to permit recovery.  The exertion that is placed on muscles doesn’t automatically recover quickly for everyone.  Thus, it’s important to have a balance. Let’s go more into why exactly.

Why You Should Try To Do Both Types Of Workout

Anaerobic workouts are good for burning fat, increasing the capacity of your muscles, and for shaping/sculpting your build through a myriad of rotational exercises.

There are plateaus that do happen, but it’s less difficult to break through them in comparison to endurance based activities.  The fat loss plateaus that happen with aerobic activity requires dietary changes or exercise regiment changes.

Aerobic activities are good for building endurance, elasticity, and general movement capability.  It also helps your cardiovascular and respiratory system. 

building endurance running

In tandem, they allow your body to become (without sounding cliche), faster, stronger, and healthier when done in proper amounts. Any good workout plan uses anaerobic workouts to build or at the least maintain muscle while using aerobic activity for cardio.  Too much anaerobic activity effectively teaches your body to run in an inefficient way that can cause problems long term.

What Are Some Drawbacks Of Too Much Cardio

Like anaerobic exercise, some drawbacks can occur from doing too much cardio. While trying to burn fat, many joggers get caught in a cycle of trying to sustain longer and longer distances thinking it will increase the rate of their fat burning.

The reality is that after a certain point, the body begins to burn muscle as well as fat. This can lead to the breakdown of vital muscle groups and can increase the likelihood of injury. Too much cardio can also lead to overexertion of the cardiovascular system as well.

Too much cardio can make exercisers feel more tired than they should be. It can also prevent restful sleep. These problems are exacerbated if you don’t have the right amount of energy being fed into your body from nutrition.

In Closing

Building a well-formed body that is capable of lasting a long time is as essential as building one that looks good. The point of each workout may vary depending on your goals. The balance of your workout won't be 50-50. 

Well Formed

For athletes, anaerobic activity will overwhelmingly be the predominant focus of aerobic activity as a secondary consideration meant to foster improvements. For those that just want to be in shape, only a slightly skewed 65-45 time or schedule split will suffice.

Doing anaerobic activities such as weightlifting and sprinting three or four days a week can be effective when balanced with aerobic activity on your off days with at least one full rest day a week. 

If you have any questions, comments, or tips, leave them below.

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