Women's Fitness: General Info

Most women know that exercise is an important part of living a healthy lifestyle, even if they don’t work out. Women’s fitness is just as important as men’s fitness. The key to both is a combination of proper diet with exercise. Women also have special concerns that should be addressed.

Studies have shown that poor physical fitness in woman can be more dangerous than that in men. While heart disease is prevalent in both men and women, it is more likely to be a problem with women who exercise less than men. The reason is currently unknown, but it hardly matters, because the remedy is easy: exercise. To maintain fitness levels, a woman should work out a minimum of 20 to 30 minutes, 5 days a week. It is not necessary to join a gym, as walking, jogging, hiking, and swimming are all great forms of exercise. Gym environments, personal trainers, and classes can offer a supportive atmosphere and motivation from other like-minded people. Cardiovascular activities are popular with woman as they seek to lose or maintain weight. Weight training is a successful way to burn calories and build shapely curves and muscles, and can be done without becoming too bulky. Yoga and Pilates classes offer variety and a fun, challenging way to stay in shape. Along with exercise, the other factor to achieve and maintain women’s fitness is to eat a proper, balanced diet; this includes a diet high in whole grains, a variety of fruits and vegetables, and lean protein sources. A healthy diet also entails reducing or eliminating fatty- and sugar-filled foods from the diet, which offer little or no nutritional benefit. Saturated, hydrolyzed, partially hydrolyzed, and trans-fatty acids found in fast food, packaged food, and vegetable oils are toxic, and should be replaced by the good healthy fats found in olive oil, avocadoes, eggs, flax, and fish oils. These good fats detoxify the body, provide sustained long term energy, and reduce arthritis and the risks of heart disease. It is particularly important for woman to eat a diet high in iron, from lean red meat and green leafy sources, because they lose this element during menstruation and may become anemic.

Women have particular fitness concerns and challenges related to pregnancy. While they may lose some of their fitness and strength during pregnancy and for a period afterward, they can recover from this within seven months. Exercising during and after pregnancy helps your immune system, circulation, and energy, and can alleviate symptoms like constipation, backaches, fatigue, and varicose veins. Exercising before and during menopause is also helpful in preventing osteoporosis in women, as exercise, especially resistance training, helps maintain bone density. While women may have some special health concerns that men do not, exercise is a wonderful and proven treatment protocol. Woman who exercise enjoy better longevity than men who exercise.