Cardio. Strength Training. Stretching. Nutrition. You can't place one element ahead of the other, since each is of equal importance when it pertains to your health & wellness. If you're not on track or on pace with your goals, is only because you're not prioritizing one, if not all, of these elements.
CARDIO: engaging in any activity that elevates your heart rate ideally over 105 bpm (beats per minute) is considered your exercise heart rate. Without the importance of engaging in exercise, it is recommended at a minimum 2X per week, 30 mins each, of cardiovascular activity for your heart's health. 3-4 days a week of cardio a week is recommended at a minimum if you're trying to lose weight or body fat. (Ex. Jogging, kickboxing, basketball, spinning).
RESISTANCE TRAINING: An area that was ignored by women (not all) and non believers initially, are slowly learning its importance to weight loss & toning. Numerous studies have been providing the proof that incorporating strength training in conjunction with cardio and proper nutrition is not only decreasing body fat composition, but also for maintenance purposes, in other words "keeping it off". It is recommended to strength train 2-3 times per week. (Ex. weight (resistance) trainin).
STRETCHING: Another area that is ignored by men (not all), body builders & non believers, are also learning the importance of flexibility and it's importance in muscular conditioning and overall wellness. Stretching in between sets, throughout the day, or taking a few yoga classes throughout the week, is intergal for muscular recovery, oxygen and blood flow, and releasing stress & your overall well being (Ex: Yoga, Pilates, periodic stretches throughout exercise and daily activities).
NUTRITION: arguably the most important piece to the puzzle, is an area that can't be ignored. One's goal setting & achievement is only met when they prioritize proper nutritional habits into their overall lifestyle. Depending on goals, calories are to be rich in lean proteins, dietary fats & complex and fibrous carbohydrates.