Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Do It For Your Heart

In celebration of yesterday's Valentine's Day and all the hearts that were being given, taken, and maybe even broken, I thought I'd write up a little something about how important cardiovascular exercise is to YOU and YOUR heart.

For years, studies have been done showing how important cardiovascular exercise is to our overall well-being, yet I am still asked all the time by new and even long term clients, "How much cardio should I be doing?" For someone just starting out, I usually recommend at least 20 minutes 3-5 days per week, depending on their capabilities. For someone who has been at it for awhile in Fitnessville, I will take a look at their current regimen and make any necessary corrections. However, the American College of Sports Medicine recommends that YOU should do your cardio exercise for 20-60 minutes, 3-5 days per week at a moderate intensity level. A lot of folks hate cardio (especially men), but the beauty of cardio is that it can be done anywhere and for practically zero cost.

Think about it. All you need to do is lace up your New Balance running shoes and go for a walk or run. Or go for a swim. Or a bike ride. Or shovel snow consistently. Or do some intervals at your local track. Or take a spin class at your local YMCA. The point is to just get that heart rate up for 20-60 minutes, 3-5 days per week at a moderate level of intensity.

If YOU do this now, just look at all the benefits YOU'LL reap: slower resting heart rate, more efficient lungs, decreased bad cholesterol, increased circulation, happy-go-lucky feeling endorphins, stronger muscles, and an improved, better, healthier, more efficient heart. After all, what are you without a happy, healthy ticker?

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