Benefits of Cardio Exercise


benefits of cardiovascular exerciseAccording to the Mayo Clinic, cardio exercises are exercises that increase your heart rate and are aerobic. The American Heart Association explains cardio exercises involve the repetitive, steady of movement of one’s legs and arms. Cardio exercises are great for your health and are a great way to burn calories to stay in shape. Cardio exercises, however, have a lot more benefits than simply elevating your heart rate and burning calories. This article will explain all the great benefits of cardio exercise.

Cardio Exercise and Its Many Benefits

  • Improved Heart Health: Performing cardio exercises have a great effect on heart health and has been shown in numerous studies to significantly decrease the chance of heart attack and/or stroke. A study conducted at Harvard University on 72,488 nurses showed that fast walking and vigorous exercise is associated with an decreased incidence of coronary disease.
  • Reduction in Body Weight: Cardio exercises are a great way to shed off lots of calories. Cardio exercise performed regularly, coupled with good nutrition, will cause you to look shredded as you continue to lose pounds and pounds of body fat.
  • Reduction in blood pressure: Performing cardiovascular exercise will significantly lower your blood pressure. Numerous studies have shown performing cardio exercises have a great preventative effect on those with normal blood pressure and has a great effect on those who have hypertension. So whether it is for preventative or curative purposes, cardio is one of the best things that can be done for your blood pressure.
  •  Increase in HDL Cholesterol (good cholesterol): Cardiovascular exercise has been shown to significantly reduce LDL cholesterol while increasing HDL cholesterol. Across numerous studies, aerobic exercise has significantly raised HDL cholesterol levels. The studies have shown that duration plays a bigger role in cholesterol levels than intensity. Therefore, when you exercise, try to exercise for at least 20-30 minutes. A study conducted at Duke University showed that cardio exercises lower LDL cholesterol. The study showed that the more intense the exercise, the greater the decrease in LDL cholesterol.
  • Helps Gain Muscle: Performing cardio exercises is a great way to stimulate and build muscles.
  • Helps Increase Mental Fatigue!: Cardio exercises have been shown to decrease mental fatigue help you focus better throughout the day! In a study conducted at the University of Georgia, sedentary individuals were shown to increase energy levels by 20 percent and decrease their fatigue by 65 percent by engaging in regular, low intensity exercise.

Types of Cardio exercises:

Aerobic exercise is more than just running. There are tons of cardio exercises that you can incorporate in your healthy lifestyle. Here is a lift of some of them:

  • Jogging
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Basketball
  • Elliptical
  • Stationary Bike
  • Stair Master
  • Ice Skating
  • Racket Ball
  • Football
  • Bicycling
  • Walking
  • Sprinting
  • Jumping

How Much Cardiovascular Exercise Should I Be Performing?

  • The American Heart Association recommends exercising for 30 minutes a day, 5 times a week. Exercising can be as simple as a simple walk or an intense 5 mile run. Just make sure you are challenging yourself in your workout. If your goal is to lose body fat, then perform 30-60 minutes of intense cardio daily to reap the many benefits of cardiovascular exercise.

Below is an infographic showing the many benefits of using elliptical trainers. If you have bad knees or joint problems, using the elliptical might be a great way to get a great workout without all the pounding.

benefits of cardio exercise and ellipticals

Put It into Practice: 3 Impactful Takeaways to Implement

  • Improved Heart Health:Performing cardio exercises has a great effect on heart health and has been shown in numerous studies to significantly decrease the chance of heart attack and/or stroke.
  • Reduction in Body Weight:Cardio exercises are a great way to burn calories and lose body fat. Regular cardio exercise, coupled with good nutrition, can help you achieve a leaner physique.
  • Lower your blood pressure:Perform cardiovascular exercise to lower your blood pressure. Cardio exercises have been shown to have a preventative effect on those with normal blood pressure and can also benefit those with hypertension.

Daniel Maman

Daniel is a certified personal trainer (ACE), has a Bachelors of Science degree in Sports, Exercise, and Wellness, and spends his free time keeping up to date with the latest research in health and fitness. In his free time, you can find him playing basketball, doing muay thai, camping, traveling, reading, and eating tomatoes like they're apples.

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