Foundations of Fitness: Why Bodyweight and Resistance Training Matter

Last week, we delved a little into why nutrition is so important to the overall functioning of our bodies and why it matters to the results of our fitness efforts. Without proper nutrition, you will be depriving your body, inside and out, of the nourishment, vitamins, and minerals that your body needs to function properly and decrease certain health risks. This week, we'll be talking about the meat of the foundations of fitness, the actual PHYSICAL ACTIVITY of it all. I'll be breaking it up into bodyweight training and resistance training. 

The Foundations of Fitness is a series I came up with to share with you the importance of a well rounded fitness lifestyle. That's right - LIFESTYLE. Here's what we'll be covering in this series:

I love a great workout with weights and resistance bands and other pieces of equipment that I can use to increase my effort and give me greater results. I love the feeling I have when I am about to give in on an exercise, and just when I feel I can't go, my mind shuts all that chatter down and I push through (does that make me crazy?). It happens in workouts where I'm using weights and in workouts when I'm only using my bodyweight - hey, you try doing 20 burpees straight at the end of each of 4 sets of your workout! If I do it just right, I may even hear myself fussing me out a little, LOL. 

A great workout will incorporate both bodyweight and resistance training, simply because of the idea of progression and variety of workout programs. I love to use a mixture of bodyweight and resistance if there is an ailment I'm having that I can keep calm by still working out, but just switching to a bodyweight version similar to the exercise I would have done with weight. Some people have a preference of bodyweight over resistance training, and that's fine. Allow me to give just a few reasons why you need both for stellar fitness results. 

Both bodyweight and resistance training are great methods to utilize on your fitness journey. It's HOW you implement each one that determines the level of difficulty. 

In the case of bodyweight training, you have some pros and cons. First, bodyweight programs are great for beginners who are just starting out on their fitness journey. This is also beneficial to them because you get to learn the proper form of an exercise before you include adding weight to the mix. Bodyweight training is also great for muscle endurance. If you're doing squats, you can progress from a bodyweight squat to a jump squat, but you can't really quantify how much stronger you've gotten. You may be able to FEEL the struggle you may have learning a new progression, but you can't put a number on it. When it comes to adding weight to a barbell and being able to see that you are progressing from 145 lbs. to 150 lbs. and that hard core evidence of improvement is there. Another reason bodyweight training matters to a workout program is, if you have any ailments, old broken bones, adrenal challenges, you're going to need some modification. Modifying an exercise or a workout is so important because it gives those who may feel like they can't do something the ability to do it and even progress from that level. Modifying a workout or exercise doesn't make you a weakling, either. It actually is a great help to those who may be coming off of injury or sickness. Modifications rock!

With resistance training, it's very apparent that you are at a certain quantifying number of achievement. There's hard evidence that you can see where you are, and where you want to be. Resistance is the foundation of strength training vs. bodyweight is known for being an endurance driving workout. With resistance training you are able to see the "gains" that you have worked on a little easier. As you increase your resistance and gain strength, you are also able to burn more calories and fat than with bodyweight training. Now the con with resistance training is that if you are not performing an exercise properly and you're carrying around extra weight, you run the risk of injuring yourself and learning bad habits. We all know that bad habits are hard to cut. Another con with resistance training is that because you can actually see the resistance progression, you may be more inclined to stay at a comfort level of sorts that allows you to stay stagnant if you're scared to increase the resistance (this takes us back to why mindset is SO important).

So there you have it. Bodyweight training and resistance training are both integral in building and growing a consistent fitness program where you won't get bored, you'll have variation, and you have progression at any stage in the game. The key is to GET STARTED.

Have you got any questions about bodyweight training or resistance training that I can help you with? Let me know, I'd love to answer your questions! You can also join my free PRIVATE Facebook Group, The Focused, Fit, and Fly Spot. Get support and tips from me and some of your future community members.