Running Ideas


Which Sport is Best?

The main reason we usually take up a sport or fitness activity is to get fit, stay fit, lose weight or train for an event and compete.  However, other factors come into it as well, when we are considering a sport or fitness activity. The usual sporting activities for age groups 30+ are listed below ( I have left out team sports like footy and cricket, and walking). Last week I looked at the economics or these activities, in Fitness Economics,  this week I rate the other factors, such as health benefits, injury risks, cardio and strength benefits and many are my ratings


Cardio rating- High- Calories burnt by running for one hour- 800-1000
Running is rated the most intense cardio fitness sport, along with Cross Country skiing.

Strength Rating- Low- unless you combine strength work in your running workouts, such as hills, beach, stairs etc

Cross Training rating- Low

Sociability- Low if running alone (high if you are a member of Lazy Runner!)

Injury Risk- High- but mostly preventable. The main injuries in running come from over use, such as running too much or too far

Motivation- High if training for an event

Benefits- The high cardio feature, allows for weight loss and lowering of body fat,
Running is known to lower blood pressure, help depression and helps the fight against obesity that is attributed to many serious medical conditions.

Running is also a weight bearing exercise so is good for bone density

Flexible- can be done anywhere, anytime


Downside- non motivating if you are running alone,



Cardio rating- Medium-Calories burnt by swimming freestyle for one hour- 500-600

Strength Rating- High- especially in upper body

Cross Training rating- Low

Sociability- Low

Injury Risk- Low

Motivation- Low

Benefits- good exercise alternative if you are unable to participate in weight bearing exercise.


Can be done indoors and outdoors

Downside- many people complain a lot about the boredom associated with swimming



Cardio rating- High -Calories burnt cycling at a vigorous effort for one hour- 700-800

Strength Rating- Medium- builds strength in legs especially quadriceps

Cross Training rating- Low

Sociability- Medium, if riding in groups

Injury Risk- High- Mainly through road accidents and falls off bike

Motivation- Medium
Benefits- great cardio benefits

Downside- the expense of your equipment, and dealing with traffic



Cardio rating- Medium- Calories burnt during one hour of tennis- 400-500

Strength Rating- Low

Cross Training rating- Medium-Good all over body workout

Sociability- High if playing competition or social tennis

Injury Risk- High- sudden fast movements and turns can puts lots of pressure on joints or cause soft tissue injuries, and tennis elbow of course

Motivation-High- if in a team or  play competition

Benefits- Tennis is a great all over workout, can be done indoors and outdoors.

Motivational, due to teamwork and competition

Down side- need other people to particiapte




Cardio rating
- Medium to high (depending on which classes you participate in)
Calories burnt-Kick boxing class- 500-600, Circuit 400-500, Pilates- 300, Spin Class- 500-600
Weight Training- 300-400, Aerobics(high impact)- 500-600, Zumba- 400-600

Strength Rating- Medium or high (depending on what weight training you are doing)

Cross Training rating- High if doing some gym and several other classes

Sociability- Low during classes

Injury Risk- Low

Motivation- Low

Benefits- great all over benefits can be obtained if you attend three or four different classes a week.

Safe environment to train in, as you have trainer there to help and assist if you are having problems.

Indoors so no wet weather cancellations

Downside- Can get boring

Can be expensive

Hard to stay motivated as there is no competition or events to aim for



Cardio rating
- Low- calories burnt during an 18 round game-500

Strength Rating- Low

Cross Training rating- High

Sociability- High

Injury Risk- Low

Motivation- Medium if playing in club challenges

Benefits – a great outdoor activity that gets you outside walking and swinging for a few hours.

Downside- outdoors so wet weather cancellations, drinking too much in the club house afterwards (although this could be looked at as a benefit as well)




Cardio rating- High- see swimming, cycling and running for calories burnt

Strength Rating- High

Cross Training rating- High

Sociability- Medium if training in groups or tri clubs

Injury Risk- High

Motivation- High

Benefits- Fantastic all over fitness if trained correctly

High cardio activity , good to keep your weight and body fat down

Downside- Can be expensive, and lots of equipment to get to events

Hard to fit all the training in




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