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Types of Fitness Training

written by: Deborah Walstad • edited by: Angela Atkinson • updated: 2/23/2011

Optimize and individualize your workouts to reach your fitness goals by learning about the different types of fitness training and the health benefits they promote.

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    Fitness training promotes health and fitness. Your training program should reflect your fitness goals. When you're starting a fitness regime, consider what types of exercise you enjoy, how much time you have available and what you want to achieve as a result of your workouts. Incorporating a variety of types of fitness training is also an effective way of achieving overall fitness.

    The most basic types of fitness training include cardiovascular training, strength training, stretching and combination sports. Other types of fitness training can be used for reaching specific fitness goals, including weight reduction training and interval training.

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    Cardiovascular Training

    Cardiovascular fitness training is optimal for getting you heart rate up to promote burn fat and strengthen your heart and lungs. Cardio exercise gets you breathing hard and sweating, but you should still able to carry on a conversation with someone. Low impact cardio exercises include using an elliptical, biking and swimming. Low impact exercise gets your heart rate up, but is gentle on your joints. High impact cardio is more intense and includes activities such as jump roping, running and aerobics.

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    Strength Training

    Strength training exercises tone muscles by lifting weights, using resistance bands, calisthetics (such as push-ups, sit-ups, pull-ups, etc) and other types of exercise that tone key muscle groups. Strength training is ideal for improving your muscle mass and increasing your metabolism to burn fat more efficiently.

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    Stretching

    Many people don't realize that stretching is an important type of fitness training. Stretching will protect you from injury and improve your flexibility. It is important to take the time to stretch well before and after exercising.

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    Combination Sports

    Many fitness activities and sports are a combination of the different types of training. Yoga is a great exercise for combining strength training with stretching. Cross country skiing is one of the best exercises to get a combination of cardio and strength training. Cross training helps strengthen your muscles and becoming fit and flexible.

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    Weight Reduction Training

    Similar to combination sports, weight reduction fitness programs involves a combination of cardio exercises, toning exercises and adds workouts specific to losing weight. Weight reduction training can help you weight at a faster pace to reach your weight loss goals.

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    Interval Training

    Interval Training consists of alternating between periods of active or intense exercise and periods of rest. Interval training is an effective way to get fit, lose weight and train for a particular sport. Examples of fitness training include sprinting laps with rests in between and swimming laps with rest periods between each.

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    By familiarizing yourself with the different types of fitness training and how they help promote fitness, you can put together a good workout program that works for you. Try writing down fitness goals for when and how you plan to exercise until it becomes a habit. If you find yourself getting bored, switch things up by trying something new. Overall, having a well-thought out plan and sticking with it will yield results of a more active, healthy lifestyle.