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Training vs Exercise

We all know that we need to exercise and be physically active to maintain good health for both our bodies and our minds but what’s the difference between exercise and training and why is it important for us to understand it.

As coaches, we believe it’s important to identify the key differences between training and exercise with our clients because it helps them understand how to achieve their goals better, or on the other hand, explains why they haven’t been able to achieve their goals previously.

The biggest difference between training and exercise is that when you train, you have a focus. You have a specific goal (target) and a plan on how you are going to get there. Much like an Olympic athlete. You know what you are doing when you are doing it and why you are doing it. There are steps and measures to make sure you are on track and moving towards your goal. Because of this, training also helps in other areas such as accountability, motivation, and feedback.

Exercise on the other hand is more general and considered more as physical activity. Exercise can be everything and anything we do where we are active such as walking, social sport, active leisure, exercise classes etc etc. When we do them it is usually out of enjoyment or to keep up our activity levels. Because of this, exercising will and should take up the bulk of your daily/weekly activity but it won’t necessarily help you achieve a specific goal.

Our Definitions:

Training – Specific exercise which is pre-planned and carried out to produce a specific outcome or result.

Exercise – Physical activity to sustain or improve general health and fitness with no specific outcome.

We have already spoken about the recommendations for physical activity in our blog -. This is where you’ll spend most of your time and is key to maintaining good health and fitness, especially the social and enjoyment side of things. But if you have a specific goal that you want to achieve. Then just exercising won’t be enough to be successful. You need to go that one step further and move into doing more organised training.

If you have a specific goal that you would like to achieve and need help to develop a training plan for it then we’d love to be involved and help you on your journey in any way we can.

Nathan Spring