One of the effective ways to strengthen heart health is to exercise regularly.
On the occasion of World Heart Day, let’s take a step towards improving heart health by being physically active. Regular exercising is one of the most effective ways to keep your heart strong and healthy. Health conditions such as high cholesterol levels, high blood sugar levels, high blood pressure – are under control when you exercise.
It is essential to understand that when you combine different types of exercises together, it provides you with complete fitness. Exercises such as aerobics – improves cardio health, strength training keeps your body weight in check and stretching, although it may not contribute directly to heart health but it definitely provides a strong foundation to perform other exercises effectively.
Here’s how different kinds of exercises impact your heart
Heart benefits of aerobics
Aerobic exercise improves your overall fitness level. Aerobics pumps your heart strengthening its muscles, improves blood circulation regulating blood pressure and heart rate. Excellent workout to control blood sugar levels.
As part of your aerobic regime you can brisk walk, run – if your body allows, swim – if you can, and do some spot jumps. You can also find senior friendly low-impact aerobic exercises on the internet.
You can make aerobics part of your workout routine thrice a week for 15 minutes each to begin with.
Heart benefits of strength training
Strength or resistance training reduces body fat – a risk factor to heart health. This kind of exercise will help you gain leaner muscle mass and improve good cholesterol (HDL) levels. With age muscle begins to weaken, strength training using your body weight will have a significant impact on muscle strengthening and building.
As part of your strength training exercise you can do wall push-ups, pulse squats, lying hip bridges, toe stands and dead bugs.
You can practise strength training twice a week for 15-30 minutes each to begin with.
Heart benefits of stretching
Stretching and flexibility exercises indirectly contribute to heart health. It benefits musculoskeletal health – support, stability and movement of the body. When you regularly stretch your body before and after workout it will help you become flexible. Your joint pain will reduce to a great extent. Flexibility, stretching and balance exercises help maintain stability and prevents falls. So, if you have a strong musculoskeletal health, it will help you perform any kind of exercise better.
As part of your stretching and flexibility workout you can practise yoga and tai chi before and after your workout sessions. You can find easy stretching exercises on the internet.
Exercising is one of the best gifts for your heart. While maintaining a proper healthy diet is important, it is also essential to maintain a healthy weight to protect your heart against coronary diseases.
Here are the overall heart benefits of exercising
1. Regulated blood pressure – When it comes to heart health high blood pressure is a major risk factor. Regular exercise slows the heart rate and lowers blood pressure.
2. Weight control – Exercising and a healthy diet has a great impact on heart health. When you are physically active your weight is in check. Being overweight can cause stress and pressure to your heart that may lead to a stroke.
3. Helps quit smoking – As you become fit chances of you quitting cigarettes rises. When you exercise regularly your body begins to flush out all the toxins leaving it clean. As your body becomes free from all the toxins it is less likely to relapse into smoking.
4. Lowers stress – Exercising releases endorphins which has a positive effect on you. It eases stress and balances stress hormones.
5. Reduces inflammation – Say good bye to chronic inflammation. As you exercise the body adapts to the challenge of exercising, it reduces fat mass and increases muscle production. Working out everyday for 20 minutes can help you reduce inflammation.
Exercise as much as you can. Try to keep a target for yourself each day, this will help improve your overall well-being.