It was Major Kenneth Cooper of the U.S. Air Force who developed the system of physical conditioning exercises for astronauts to enhance the circulatory and respiratory efficiency of the body through vigorous sustained exercises such as jogging, swimming, or cycling, better known today as aerobics. It has evolved into its present day variant of low impact aerobics in which one foot of the individual performing the exercise is always in contact with the ground.
Aerobic exercise is the real secret to permanently losing body fat. Without exercise, it is impossible to lose fat permanently by dieting alone. Not incorporating an aerobic exercise program with a diet plan is one of the major reasons of failure to sustain permanent weight loss. Eating often and performing regular aerobic exercises boosts the body’s metabolic rate inducing weight loss of body fats!
An aerobic exercise is any cardiovascular activity that involves large muscle groups and can be performed continuously for long periods of time (30-60 minutes). Common aerobic activities are fast walking, jogging, bicycling, stair climbing, rowing, cross-country skiing and elliptical exercises.
Why are aerobic exercises necessary for fat loss? The best choice of physical activity to achieve measurable fat loss is one that makes the body burn fats instead of carbohydrates for fuel. Intermittent physical activities or sports are not as efficient as aerobics in burning fat because they are anaerobic. Short bursts of physical activities (anaerobic) primarily burn carbohydrate for fuel. Burning fat requires the presence of large amounts of oxygen in the body and this happens only during aerobic activities.
To achieve permanent fat loss, it is therefore ideal to burn body fat by performing longer duration exercises at a moderate to moderately high intensity levels.