What with today’s lifestyle where everyone’s rushing around trying to get a day and a half’s work done in a day, and wishing there were more than 24 hours in a day, very few people seriously factor in time for exercise. One may be busy, busy, busy, but if you’re spending a lot of time at that desk ruling your world, you are likely to increase your risk for developing heart disease. But, don’t panic yet, because there are many things you can do to minimize that risk.
Regular exercise, particularly aerobic exercise,which is fun, has many benefits, some of which are:
- Stronger heart and cardiovascular system.
- Better blood circulation helping your body use oxygen better.
- Higher energy levels enabling you be more active without getting exhausted or breathless
- Better endurance.
- Lower blood pressure.
- Improve muscle tone and strength.
- Enhance balance and joint flexibility.
- Stronger bones.
- Body fat reduction, while taking you to a healthy weight
- Lower stress, tension, depression or anxiety
- More self confidence and happier body image
- Better sleep.
- Higher level of fitness and health
- More R&R (rest and relaxation)
Usually, the most recommended types of exercises are:
Where you slowly lengthen your muscles. Stretching arms and leg muscles before and after you exercise makes them ready for activity, preventing injury and muscle strain. It also makes you more flexible.
Cardiovascular or aerobic
This involves steady physical activity using large muscle groups. It is great to make your heart and lungs stronger, helping the body use your oxygen intake in a better way. Aerobics is great for your heart as it can bring down your heart rate, controlling your blood pressure and consequently, helping you breathe better.
Some examples of aerobics exercises are: walking, jogging, jumping rope, bicycling, cross-country skiing, skating, rowing, and low-impact aerobics or water aerobics.
This involves repetitive muscle tightening until the muscle tires. If you have a heart condition, strengthening exercises are best avoided.
So how often should you plan exercise?
To actually enjoy the benefits of exercise, plan to take up aerobics that last about 20-30 minutes – about three or four times a week. Every day is also fine, because maintaining a regular schedule brings you the maximum benefits.
Remember, it is always better to consult your general physician before you begin an extended exercise program, especially if you happen to be on medication, so that you know what to avoid and what is safe.
The Health is Wealth series includes:
And this was triggered off by Job Burnout – does it apply to you?