Exercise is any physical activity that improves or maintains general health and well being and fitness. There are many forms of exercise including aerobic exercises which improve the heart and lungs, muscle toning exercises which strengthen and tone muscle and toning exercises that tighten and slim the muscles. The purpose of each type of exercise is to cause the body to adapt so that it can better handle the stress or movement that is causing it to function poorly.
The type of exercise that is right for you depends on your specific needs and what you hope to accomplish. The first thing to know about exercise is that no form of physical activity provides the same results in all people. This is because the results from one person’s exercise regimen can be different than the next person because of genetics and health factors. This is why the American College of Sports Medicine recommends that you do a little research to determine the level of intensity that is right for you.
One study reported that women who participated in high intensity exercises such as aerobics, triathlons, marathons or bicycle races increased their chances of contracting breast cancer by fifty percent compared to those who participated in more moderate activities. Exercise can also have a positive effect on the body’s ability to heal itself. Exercise has been shown to reduce the amount of time patients take to recover from surgery and nursing homes.
It can also reduce the amount of time needed for patients to return to work after an illness or surgery. Finally, exercise helps to keep muscles toned and increases the production of new muscle mass. When muscles are used regularly they are more flexible, stronger and longer.