“Endurance (also related to sufferance, resilience, constitution, fortitude, and hardiness) is the ability of an organism to exert itself and remain active for a long period of time, as well as its ability to resist, withstand, recover from, and have immunity to trauma, wounds, or fatigue. It is usually used in the aerobic or anaerobic exercise. The definition of 'long' varies according to the type of exertion – minutes for high-intensity anaerobic exercise, hours or days for low-intensity aerobic exercise” says, the Wikipedia definition of endurance
Now that we know of endurance as the ability to exert yourself for a prolonged period or being able to withstand stress or fatigue, I do not have to go on why/how improving our endurance helps in our daily day - to - day activities.
Endurance is also one of the parameters of measuring the fitness quotient of a person. Fitness is the combination of the 4 components, with each of it having its own importance - (i) Cardiorespiratory endurance (ii) Muscular strength, (iii) Muscular endurance, (iv) Body composition, (v) Flexibility
Since our topic is about endurance, let me explain more about the Cardiorespiratory Endurance & Muscular Endurance
Cardiorespiratory Endurance -
Cardiorespiratory Endurance is your heart and lung’s ability to work efficiently at a moderate intensity over a long period of time.
Brisk walking, jogging, swimming etc are some of the exercises that will help you improve it. Our hearts and lungs should have the ability to deliver oxygen to the body's tissues during sustained physical activity. A good cardiovascular endurance level would make you able to do an aerobic activity for a prolonged period. If you are able to climb stairs without panting halfway through, you are having a reasonably good cardiovascular endurance. Aerobic activities that help you increase your blood flow and heart rates will help you control several heart disease risk factors, including high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and obesity. To build and maintain cardiovascular endurance, aim to do some kind of cardio activity at least three times per week, in sessions lasting at least 20 minutes. Don't forget to stretch and warm up before exercising and to cool down after exercising to prevent injury.
How to measure your Cardiorespiratory Endurance -
Resting Heart Rate (RHR) is a very good indicator of cardiovascular endurance. A normal RHR range for adults is 60 to 100 beats per minute. A lower heart rate at rest implies a better heart function and hence better cardiovascular fitness. For example, a well-trained athlete might have a normal RHR closer to 40-50 beats a minute.
Consult your doctor if your RHR is consistently above 100 beats a minute (know as tachycardia) or if you are not a trained athlete and your RHR is below 60 beats a minute (known as bradycardia)
How to improve your cardiovascular endurance
The good news is that you can improve your cardiovascular endurance through structured aerobic exercises planned within 60 - 80 percent of your maximum heart rate (MHR).
Remember, MHR is only an indicative number and it is roughly equal to → MHR = (220 - Your age)
A structured aerobic exercise planned within 60 - 80 percent of your maximum heart rate (MHR) will help in making the heart muscle grows stronger and thus pump more blood with each beat. Blood vessels become more elastic, reducing blood pressure, and capillaries. Walking, jogging, swimming, cycling and stair climbing etc are some of the aerobic exercises.
Muscular Endurance -
Muscular endurance is the ability of a muscle or group of muscles to sustain repeated contractions against a resistance for an extended period of time. The best way to increase muscular endurance is by involving in weight training. The ability to do a certain number of reps of exercise without breaking the form and without needing to stop or rest.
To build endurance it is always better to start off slow and then increase the intensity of the exercise. Like starting with lesser weights and then increasing the reps and weights.
How to Measure Your Muscular Endurance :
The number of pushups one can do in the correct form is a very good measure of upper body muscular endurance. Curl-up test is yet another endurance test to measure the core stability, back support and abdominal strength.
PS: Curl-up test - You start by lying on your back, knees bent, feet flat and arms extended and rested on the floor, palms facing downward. The head has to be in a neutral position. One curl up consists of raising your head, until the shoulder comes off a few inches above the floor
Article Contributed by - Priya Menon (GetSetGo Coach - http://getsetgo.fitness/public/coachprofile/Priya)