Cardiovascular exercise, also known as cardio, has many benefits to your body. Cardio is any movement that gets your heart rate up and increases blood circulation. Cardio is a key component to your fitness plan, whether through running, walking, or biking.
Cardio is most often used to burn off calories. All cardio burns off excess calories, but some forms of cardio are better for fat loss than others. A major reason for cardio is weight loss because of the fat and calories burned. Cardio benefits do not just include fat loss, it actually has many real health benefits.
Cardio strengthens your heart.
Cardio gets your heart beating, which causes the muscle (Yes, your heart is a muscle!) to become strong, just like working out arms or legs. When you run for a long time, or really fast, you can feel your heart beating faster and harder, which shows how your heart is getting a workout. A heart is very important to the human body, it is what keeps you alive! Having a healthy, exercised heart can improve your overall health and lower the risk for serious heart problems.
Increased metabolism = Weight control
Another benefit is what cardio does to your metabolism. Your metabolism is a process in your body that works in order to keep you alive, and a main part of this process is turning food into energy. Cardio increases your metabolism, which not only helps your energy but also makes it easier to control your weight. Cardio also helps the body breakdown glucose causing your body to control sugars, which can be a huge help when trying to manage diabetes.
Cardio has a “feel good” effect.
Many people exercise because they feel good afterwards, but where does this good feeling come from? What most people don’t know is that exercising actually releases hormones called endorphins in your body during and after exercise. Not all exercises release endorphings, but cardiovascular exercise does. This hormone helps fight depression and fatigue, and also releases other hormones that help to control you appetite. Cardio is considered a stress relief method because of these hormones and many doctors recommend it to patients, and this is also why when you say you are stressed someone (like me) will say, “Go for a run!”
Slow cardio decreases tomorrows soreness.
After intense workouts, people will hop on treadmills for a slow-paced cardio exercise, such as walking or a light jog. They do this because low cardio helps increase recovery time. Low cardio reduces your DOMS, or delayed onset of muscle soreness, and puts more oxygen in your blood improving the rebuilding process so you can get back in the gym faster.
Cardiovascular exercise has many positive benefits, even though it may be a pain to do. I highly recommend that everyone does some type of cardio, whether at the gym or just walking throughout the day. Each minute of cardio you do is helping to burn fat, strengthen your heart, and makes you feel good.
If you need help setting up your cardiovascular exercise program, or don’t believe you can find time in the day, give me a call at 239-558-4146 and I can help you examine your schedule and make sure to fit it in. It is your quality of life, lets make it as awesome as possible!