Despite the fact that we live in the 21st century with access to various kinds of healing methods and healthy lifestyle choices, heart disease is still the key cause of death in the US, and one of the leading culprits around the world, as well. Research shows that an American suffers a heart attack approximately every 40 seconds, and with these and similar numbers painting a vivid picture of our state of health, its high time more people started thinking about prevention.
Exercise, combined with a healthy diet, remains the best way to keep your cardiovascular system resilient, and the following five can help you achieve your goals to protect your heart!
If you have ever felt the incredible sensation of picking up the pace while you jog in a park, and your heart accelerating from the effort, you know why this simple activity still reigns supreme when it comes to cardiovascular wellbeing. It helps keep your muscles toned and your blood vessels working hard to deliver oxygen, thus improving your endurance.
How you run is as important as the duration or your outfit, so make sure that you stay away from pavement, as it puts too much stress on your tendons and ligaments, which can lead to injury. Also, if you are new to the routine, start with brief training sessions, never skip your warm-up and stretches, and of course, always stay hydrated, especially during the warmer months. Another thing to keep in mind is to wear protective gear that prevents sunburn, and you’ll be all set.
2. HIIT Sessions
Unlike moderately intense exercises such as running, high-intensity interval training is meant to put more pressure on your entire body, and it is a challenging way to build up your stamina and strength. It’s loved for its brevity, as the core premise is that you perform short bursts of intense exercises with brief rest periods in between.
Since this is not a routine for the faint of heart (pardon the pun), you should always check if this is a safe option for your level of fitness. In case it is, start by introducing shorter interval routines, monitor how well your body adapts, and increase the length over time.
3. Weight Training
Those with little or no experience in the realm of lifting often assume that weight training is reserved primarily for building muscle. This is only partially true, as a well-crafted weightlifting routine can also pose a great challenge to your heart and help it become more resilient in the process of obtaining a strong, lean figure.
The best way to see maximum results with this routine is to focus on compound movements such as the squat, the military press, the bench, and the deadlift, all of which target your entire body and build up your cardiovascular stamina. Remember to bring suitable gear, such as a pair of bodybuilding shoes to ensure safety and a proper posture, and form-fitting clothes that help you keep an eye on your form.
As relaxing as it may be, casual swimming during the beach season unfortunately doesn’t count as an effective way to apply this sport to boost your heart health. In fact, to maximize the effects of this wonderful activity, consider incorporating lane swimming into your weekly routine, and switching between techniques.
That way, you will maintain a certain level of challenge on your entire body, and this mild sport has shown great results in keeping high blood pressure at bay, as well as improving your overall cardiovascular health. Pick a comfortable swimsuit and perhaps a pair of goggles to keep your eyes safe, and hit the pool when you get the chance!
Another possibly surprising activity on the list, this ancient practice is famous for its power to give you a more limber, flexible body, better posture, and a tranquil mind. One of its less known benefits lies precisely in increasing your cardiovascular endurance, and that makes it a great choice for people who already have an underlying heart condition due to its mild pace and controlled breathing exercises.
Since there are different yoga styles that can be used to improve your heart health, you can do some research before you settle for the one that will fit you best. Ashtanga is a frequent choice as it can be quite demanding on your entire body, while Bikram is a recent favorite of many younger people who like that it takes place in a heated room.
Although there is no cookie-cutter solution that fits us all, there are many heart-friendly activities that will help you live a longer, healthier life, and nurture your independence for years to come!
Scarlet is a passionate writer and regular contributor at ripped.me interested in fashion, lifestyle, and health. She loves traveling, you could say that she is a real travel addict, especially when she has a chance to visit some exotic destinations. She would tell you that inspiration can be found in the most unexpected places.