We have all undoubtedly heard the recommendations from doctors and experts that 30 minutes of exercise a day, 5 days a week, is a vital key to maintain robust health. But when it’s cold and rainy, or you’re tired, or you’ve had a tough day at work, it’s tempting to skip that workout in favor of the couch.
What makes aerobic exercise so important that we need it nearly every day of the week? Here are your major questions, answered.
What Qualifies as Aerobic Exercise? Also known as cardio, this type of workout challenges the heart and the lungs by increasing your heart rate. Some people dread this type of workout and others return to it each day with a passion. Swimming, biking, jogging, and dancing are common examples of cardio, but more uncommon activities like cross-country skiing qualify as well.
What Are the Benefits of Cardio? Where to start?! Cardio exercise is a powerful tool because it does so many incredible things for your body.
Stronger Heart Health. Cardio exercise contributes to the prevention of heart disease by enhancing the heart’s ability to provide muscles with oxygen-rich blood. Raising your heart rate each day through cardio exercise will help the heart become stronger and healthier than if you remained sedentary all day.
Faster Metabolism. The rate at which you burn calories plays a large role in your ability to lose weight. Cardio raises your metabolism so that you can see your hard work paying off with a trimmer, slimmer waist line.
Immunity. Believe it or not, studies show that cardio can boost your ability to fight off illness with a stronger immune system.
Longer Life Span. With benefits like a stronger heart, lower cholesterol, and enhanced immunity to disease, it’s no wonder that regular cardiovascular exercise can help you achieve a longer life.
How Should You Start? If you’re unfamiliar with cardio techniques but you want to begin a routine, choose an activity you enjoy that involves movement. It doesn’t have to be complicated- just a walk through your neighborhood will work! As you gradually build up strength you can complete more rigorous workouts to continue challenging your limits.