Cardio, high-repetition weight training, proper hydration and deep breathing exercises help build endurance. Consume protein, healthy fats, low glycemic index foods and reduce carbs (unless you are doing strenuous activity for at least 30 mins). Endurance or stamina can be categorized as general stamina, cardiovascular stamina, local muscular endurance, and isometric stamina.
Endurance, also known as stamina, comes in several flavors.
Types Of Endurance
1. General Stamina
The ability to perform ever so well the necessities and luxuries of our daily lives, without undo fatigue or effort (Life should NOT feel like an uphill-both-ways struggle! No, not even when we are ‘older’!).
2. Cardiovascular Stamina
More specifically, we have cardiovascular stamina in which our heart, lungs and blood vessels work in coordinated harmony to let us safely exert ourselves in accordance with the needs of the situation we find ourselves in.
3. Local Muscular Endurance
We also have local muscular endurance, in which specific muscles happily find themselves able to repeat a needed motion again and again and again.
4. Isometric Stamina
We also have an ‘isometric’ stamina which enables us to remain in a position for as long as is needed.
Endurance And Age
When you read about aging as related to endurance, you read conflicting statements, e.g. “I get tired faster now that I’m older;” vs. “Endurance is the old man’s game.” What are we to make of this apparent contradiction? Several things act to explain this.
First, we have to look quite honestly about how the person of high stamina has lived his or her life compared to the person of low stamina. Some questions that we need to answer are:
- Is their weight still good?
- Has their diet been healthy?
- Has their stress level increased or decreased?
- Have they exercised diligently and appropriately?
Genetics always, always play a role, but no matter what genetic cards we have been dealt, the answer to good aging is always the same: play the hand as best you can, wisely and diligently maximize your genetic strengths and arrange your lifestyle to counteract your weaknesses.
Endurance In Athletics
In an athletic sense it often comes to pacing. For example, young people run faster than older people and their ability to recover after exertion is often quicker as well. So, if an older person tries to do repeat sprints with little recovery, he or she might be very disappointed if they try to compete with a younger person.
However, some older athletes become very good at getting into a pace and keeping that pace up for a very long time. The legendary Tarahumara people of the Copper Canyon area of Mexico are renowned for the endurance running of their older members, with distances reported to be 100 miles or more, and sometimes kicking a round wooden ball.
Of course, they have a lifetime of training and cultural expectations that such apparent feats of stamina are definitely in the realm of possibility.
Measures To Improve Stamina
Many factors can contribute to increasing your stamina.
- Basic cardio
- High repetition weight training
- Deep breathing – boosts oxygen intake
Proper Diet Is Paramount
But there is no substitute for having a good proper diet. It’s better for everything including stamina.
Include protein, healthy fats, low glycemic index foods including vegetables (think veggies that don’t convert to sugar readily) and reduce carbohydrates unless you are doing strenuous activity for at least 30 minutes.
If you feed the “machine” right, it will help you reap the benefits of better strength, vitality and health overall.