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The Principles of Anaerobic Exercise

Mar 12, 2008
Anaerobic exercise is mainly associated with muscle building or weight lifting. Technically all types of anaerobic exercises are described as movements that are carried out "without oxygen."

This means that on a molecular level, the cells are not requiring additional oxygen through heavy breathing to accomplish the move. Weight lifters still breathe but they are not in an oxygen deficit constantly like aerobic exercisers are as they raise their heart rate while exercising.

The principle of needing less oxygen is just the exact opposite of aerobic exercises, which require more oxygen and an accelerated heartbeat to work properly. Aerobic exercises include such activities as cycling, jumping rope, swimming, spinning on a stationary cycle, rebounding and running.

Different types of anaerobic exercises are typically used in non-endurance sports to build muscle mass. Muscles that are training under anaerobic conditions develop in a different way then muscles that are training for activities that are of a short duration.

Muscles bulk up quickly and becoming very strong. This is due to the contraction and protraction of muscle fibers, which work a lot harder without the oxygen constantly being pumped into the lungs as the result of the body going into a deficit.

Muscle training works differently because it forces the body to use processes that are not dependent on oxygen to produce energy. In fact the ideal intention of many types of anaerobic exercises is to make muscles work harder. Muscles that don't have sufficient oxygen to meet the demands of the activity bulk up. This does not mean that the body does not receive any oxygen at all when you are working anaerobically in a gymnasium. It just means that you are not using as much oxygen as if you were jogging or swimming.

Anaerobic exercise involves muscular effort, usually short bursts of activity followed by periods of rest. Types of anaerobic exercises include rowing, push-ups, pull-ups, tug of war, sit-ups and squats.

All weight lifting exercises are also anaerobic in nature. Many types of anaerobic exercises associated with weightlifting include working with pulleys, medicine balls and slant boards. These are not expansive exercise and are typically performed in a gym or weight room. This is very unlike an aerobic exercise, which usually requires that the body travel unless you are using a training machine such as a stationary bicycle.

Different types of anaerobic exercises can also be used as part of interval training. Interval training is a very efficient way to lose weight and build muscle.

Interval training involves practicing different types of anaerobic exercises such as weight lifting in tandem with aerobic exercises such as cycling, jogging and jumping rope. The combination of both exercises is an effective way to lose weight and keep it off for good.

Even better, practicing anaerobic exercises can help you build lean muscle. Lean muscle keeps on burning fat long after you stop exercising. This is why anaerobic exercise is such an important component of an exercise program that is geared towards achieving weight loss.
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