What Is Your Exercise Type? And, My Personal Fitness Routine!

Knowing your body type can help you find a fitness plan that works best for you – one that you can stick with. Older systems of medicine categorized patients into types or constitutions. This helped determine the most beneficial form of exercise. 

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In ayurvedic wisdom, there are three basic types or “doshas” – Vata, Pitta and Kapha. Each person is made up of a combination of doshas, with one or two being dominant. Your unique combination of doshas makes up your constitution.

Ayurvedic body types are also categorized in this way – Vata, Pitta, Kapha. Your body can fall somewhere in between but is usually dominated by one of these types.

Each Body Type Benefits From a Different Exercise Plan

  • Vata types are long, lean and have lots of “wind” energy. They benefit from yoga, pilates, walking or swimming – exercise that keeps them moving without taxing their delicate nervous systems.
  • Pitta types have a medium build and are muscular. They benefit from staying active with all types of activity! A mix is best. Try crossfit training, kettlebell workouts, boot camps or a mix of Pilates, yoga and cardio.
  • Kapha types are heavier and prone to extra weight around the abdomen. They need more vigorous exercise – cardio and weights with a focus on flexibility (pilates, yoga)  to keep the body lean and agile.

My Personal Exercise Routine

Being a pitta-dominant type I benefit from a variety of activity. My favorites are yoga, swimming and pilates but I also do cardio, weights and try to play tennis and racquetball when I get the opportunity.

Yoga has a special place in my life and one of my resolutions is to do it more often. As a certified instructor, I have fun creating my own vinyasa flow routines and aim to do it 1-2 times per week. I became certified to teach during my residency, when intuition told me that I wasn’t going to have time to make it to classes one day. It was one of the best things I ever did!

People often ask me how I stay motivated to work out despite my busy work schedule and family life. I love the physical and mental benefits of exercise – it makes me feel lean, lithe, strong and relaxed. How can you beat that?! This gives me the “will” to exercise and where there is a will there is a way.

Even when I travel, I try to keep it up. I take my yoga mat and iPod with me, walk as much as possible and use the hotel gym when it’s available. You can exercise anywhere!