If you have ever watched television, read an article or a book, or listened to the radio, you have heard various ideas about exercise. You have heard people speak of having an active lifestyle, getting enough exercise, and training for a marathon. If you are like most people, you may not know the difference between the concepts of activity, exercise, and training. More importantly, you may not understand how that difference affects your life. While these differences may seem like nuances in the grand scheme of things, the truth is if you do not understand the differences, you can subject yourself to unnecessary injuries. Therefore, it is important to learn what each word really means and how it is tied to your healthy lifestyle.


Activity is the least strenuous of the trilogy. This refers to anything that your body does. Sleep is an activity. Playing chess or reading a book is an activity. The technical definition of “activity” is very basic. It is the state of being active or behavior or actions of a particular kind. Activity is part of your daily routine and helps you burn calories, even if your activity level is very low. Activity does not help increase your overall health, unless the activity falls into the other two categories: exercise or training.


Exercise is a type of activity. This type of activity does not need to be strictly regimented. However, to be considered exercise it does need to place a certain amount of strain on your body. Exercise can be cardiovascular, helping you raise your heart rate while utilizing your muscles, or muscle building, utilizing your physical strength to build body mass while raising your heart rate and burning calories. Exercise takes many forms, including running, walking, dancing, riding a bike, and lifting weights. It is important to listen to your body when exercising and push yourself. However, it is even more important not to overexert yourself to the point of injury or collapse. Proper exercise requires proper nutrition and hydration to be effective.


Building on exercise is training. Training your body requires a similar mindset as preparing for a job or studying for a test. Training is an exercise that conditions your body for a desired outcome. The outcome may be simply becoming more physically fit, or it may be more specific, like competing in a sporting event. Training is a more regimented routine that allows each day to build upon the last. Goals are set and must be reached by a designated time. It requires a unity of the mind, body, and spirit, in which you must commit to a program of exercise, food, and even sleep routines to reach your goals. Unlike exercise and activity, training must be partnered with a commitment to be successful. While you do not need to start out as an active person begin training, you must be willing to push your limits regularly.


To learn more about training your body to be physically and psychologically fit and reaching your fitness goals, contact the experts at Apex Personal Training by calling (612) 405-3002.