Cardiorespiratory Endurance and Physical Fitness
Cardiorespiratory endurance is often considered as anaerobic capacity or the maximum amount of time one can remain in a swimming pool without drowning. This is often measured in meters/second. For people who want to look good and achieve maximum aerobic power, then it is very important to have a good understanding on how does cardiorespiratory endurance effect physical fitness. It is very easy for one to measure one’s aerobic and anaerobic capacity but it is much more difficult to know which is better and which one is just average.
Basically, when you ask yourself ‘How does cardiorespiratory endurance affect physical fitness’, you are answering a question that has a wide range of answers depending on your body type and the person’s current health status. A workout program is designed in order to minimize these factors and to maximize the benefits of the workout program. Cardiorespiratory endurance can be improved by following specific exercise economy principles. The overload principle is one such principle that many athletes use.
The overload principle involves performing a high intensity level exercise with a lower workload in the same activity. It is thought that VO2 max can be improved by doing this type of workout. The higher workload lowers the resting metabolic rate or RMR for a shorter period of time. This causes the lactic acid concentration to increase which in turn increase the intensity and duration of the exercise, which consequently leads to faster fat oxidation (fat burning). Hence, the workout becomes longer and more intense and the VO2 max is maintained at a high level for a better workout result.
Anaerobic endurance is related to low intensity aerobic system. Anaerobic system basically refers to the ability of our body to produce energy from oxygen, which is then used by other parts of the body for sustaining body functions. Lactate threshold is the maximum amount of oxygen that our body can consume within a very short period. As we age our bodies convert lactose into lactic acid which in turn reduces the amount of oxygen that can be taken in by the muscles to maintain physical fitness. Therefore, as we get older, we need to take in less oxygen to maintain anaerobic endurance.
In order to prevent the onset of cardiorespiratory conditions such as hypoxia and cardiovascular disease, we must ensure that we are exercising under optimum physiological conditions and are eating a diet that provides the necessary nutrients for our muscles to properly function. By doing this we can prevent the onset of cardiorespiratory conditions like fatigue, lack of energy, weakness and even cardiac stress. Cardiorespiratory endurance is also affected by training load or intensity. Training load or intensity largely depends on the duration and intensity of the training routine and the frequency of workouts.
In order to improve your cardiorespiratory endurance you must maintain a training program that is suited to your current level of fitness. It’s important to start slow when it comes to increasing your intensity because in the beginning you may not be able to push yourself to the maximum level that is required of you. Once you have reached your fitness goals and feel strong you can increase the intensity of the exercises. It’s advisable to perform cardio based workout routines such as running, cycling and swimming instead of aerobic systems such as running and cycling. These types of routines ensure that your body is working at all times, so you can maintain your intensity level over longer periods.
Once you have maintained an intensive level of cardio training for a few weeks you will need to determine your lactate threshold or level of exertion and work towards increasing it. Lactate threshold is basically the maximum amount of oxygen you can tolerate before your body becomes exhausted. You can use a lactate threshold calculator or you can monitor your progress by keeping a record of your heart rate, the time you last pushed yourself and total amount of oxygen consumption during an exercise session.
In order to maintain a high level of physical fitness, you must reduce the amount of training you are doing and increase your recovery time between workouts. Recovery time allows your muscles to build back up on strength as it has been depleted by the intense exercise you had performed. When you push yourself beyond what your body can withstand you can cause damage to your heart and lungs. By reducing the amount of time you push yourself you will also increase your chances of achieving your fitness goals. By performing less intense exercise you can increase your recovery time. An added benefit is that you can reduce your risk of acquiring heart disease.