Cardiovascular exercise (aerobic exercise) forms an important pillar within the entire anti-aging exercise program. It is one of the greatest anti-aging bullets that is available to anyone. A list of benefits from aerobics exercise resembles that obtained with growth hormone: gain of muscles and strength, loss of fat, increased energy, greater well being and a decrease in anxiety and depression. Moreover, aerobic exercise also increases the level of HDL cholesterol, lowers blood pressure, improves immune system and helps protect the body against a host of diseases, including cardiovascular diseases, stroke, hypertension, diabetes, and osteoporosis.
While research has shown that cardiovascular exercises increase longevity, the remaining questions still under research are how much exercise is sufficient and how much is over doing it? A famous study looked at 17,000 male alumni of Harvard University between the ages of 35 and 74. Results show that the physical activities of the men increased, their death rate decreased. Men who spend at least 2,000 kilocalories per week doing moderate exercises such as tennis, swimming, jogging or brisk walking lowered their overall death rate by 25-33% and decreased their risk of crononary artery disease by an astounding 41% when compared to the more inactive fellow alumni.
The interesting fact not previously known is that going over 3,500 kilocalories actually makes things worse, with a slight increase in death rate. The lesson to be learnt is that moderate exercise is the key to longevity while extreme and over-exercise can lead to increased oxidation and tissue damage. While your heart may get a wonderful workout, the rest of the body suffers tremendous damage from oxidative stress that happens during extreme forms of exercises such as triathlon and ultra-marathons (100 miles).
Cardiovascular exercises benefit any age group. However, any exercise of aerobic capacity should be structured properly and should be scaled moderately to fit the particular needs of each person. You are advised to consult your private physician to get medical clearance first, especially if you are over 35 years old.
In selecting your aerobic exercise, consider the following: the type of activity, the duration of activity, the frequency, the intensity and the progression. Fitness experts, such as doctors in American College of Sports Medicine, have established recommendations for the quantity and quality of exercise required for the development and maintenance of both body composition and cardiovascular fitness for cardiovascular health. To this end, aerobic exercise is preferred. Aerobic activities stimulate breathing by using large muscle groups in a continuous and rhythmical manner. Exercises such as jogging, running, walking, hiking, dancing and swimming are such activities.
15-50 minutes of continuous or discontinuous aerobic activity is the minimal required for health and fitness. A better gauge is through measurement of calorie expended, the ultimate standard in any aerobic exercise. 3-5 times a week of aerobic activities is considered by most sports experts to be appropriate. This can be further broken down into smaller blocks of 10 minute each without sacrificing anti-aging effect. In an anti-aging perspective, your frequency is determined by the amount of kilocalories burnt over a 1 week period. As we know today, the optimum longevity burn rate is 2,000 kilocalorie per week. If you burn 1,000 kilocalories per exercise session, then on an aerobic perspective, you only need 2 aerobic sessions per week to achieve this goal. The 2,000 kilocalories include calories burnt during strength training as well. If your weight training is 2 times a week for 30-45 minutes each time, you will be burning 400-500 kilocalories per week. From aerobic perspective, you need only to burn 1,500 kilocalories per week, (3 aerobic sessions of 500 kilocalories per session).
From an anti-aging perspective, our goal with regards to cardiovascular exercise is to monitor the optimal point at which our heart is doing maximum work. Because of age-related deterioration of the heart muscles, a young person's maximum heart rate is different from that of an older individual. Fortunately, the targeted heart rate is a relatively easy number to calculate based on the formula of 220 minus your age. Therefore, if you are 50 years old, your maximum target heart rate should be 220-50=170. In other words, this is the maximum heart rate that you should not exceed, regardless of what form of exercise you take. If you happen to have a stress test by your cardiologist previously, you will realize and note that this is the similar number at which point your cardiologist will tell you to stop. From an anti-aging perspective, we want the heart to be stressed but yet at the same time not over-stressed. Over-stressing the heart has certain advantages and disadvantages. If you are young and training for competitive event, it is not unusual for the heart to be stressed to the maximum, especially during integral training, stressing the heart at maximum target heart rate would allow peak performance especially in sprint-type event where powerful burst of energy is required.
The intensity of an activity can vary. Most anti-aging experts are in agreement that between 60% and 80% of one's maximum heart rate is a good, reliable index of intensity. Your maximum heart rate is calculated simply by the following formula: 220 less your age. If you are 50 years old, then your maximum heart rate is 220-50=170 beats per minute. If you take 70% of this then you arrive at 109, 80% of 170 equals 135. Therefore if you exercise in an aerobic capacity which enhances your cardiovascular fitness, your exercise target heart rate should be between 109 and 135. This is of course a very general formula and does not apply to those who are training for competitive sports. As your cardio-fitness increases, your ability to train closer to your maximum cardiac heart rate level will also improved automatically.
For anti-aging purposes, however, the goal is to keep the heart in healthy condition but not to over-stress the cardio muscles. For that reason, you should adjust your exercise in such a way that your heart rate is no more than between 60-80% of your maximum heart rate. At this level, 85% of your calories burnt are fat, 5% are protein and 10% are carbohydrates. If you are training at 70-80% of your maximum heart rate, you are increasing your endurance capacity. In this zone, your functional capacity will greatly improve and you can expect to increase the number and size of the blood vessels, as well as increase in aerobic capacity and respiratory rate. At this level, 50% of your calories burnt are from carbohydrates and 50% are from fat and less than 1% are from protein. If you are training at 80-90% of your heart rate, then you have entered into another zone. In this zone, the exercise intensity is high, more calories are burnt. 85% of the calories burnt are from carbohydrates, 15% from fat and less than 1% are from protein. For anti-aging purposes, it is not recommended that you enter into this zone for a prolonged period of time. A burst of exercise within this zone just to stimulate the heart and to challenge the heart to meet adverse conditions on an intermittent basis is acceptable, however.
Training at 90% -100% of your maximum heart rate is not recommended for anti-aging purposes. In this zone, the highest number of calories are burnt and the lowest percentage of fat calories. Almost 90% of calories burnt here are carbohydrates, only 10% are fat and less than 1% are protein. Very few people can last within this zone for more than a few minutes.
For an unfit or overweight individual, small progression is advisable. This is especially true if you are starting an exercise program after a sedentary lifestyle. It is generally recommended to progressively increase your intensity effect by approximately 5-10% per month. Of course, the recommended rate of progression varies with individual, and so be sure to consult your physician concerning any increase. It is usually best to progress slowly and increase gradually in the spirit of keeping your motivation and interest intact and not torturing yourself.
To safely undergo an exercise program, it is necessary to include at least 3 phases: warm up, work out, cool down. Each phase has its particular purpose.
- Warm up phase of aerobic workout
The warm up phase usually includes stretching and breathing exercises. This may last 5-10 minutes with the purpose of increasing the body temperature, loosening the joints and legs to prevent any undue strain or soreness. A slight elevation of heart rate is also a benefit of the warm up phase and gets the heart muscles ready for the work out phase. You should be at 50-60% of your target heart rate during this phase.
- Work out phase of aerobic workout
The work out phase usually lasts from 15-50 minutes. The ideal period is approximately 20-40 minutes. To improve cardiovascular fitness and body composition, as well as to lose weight, continuous aerobic exercise of low to moderate intensity is recommended. Strenuous, high intensity workouts are not encouraged for anti-aging purposes although it may be wonderful for competitive sports. The reason is because during intensive and strenuous exercises the metabolism rate of each cell increases, resulting in the increase in production of oxidised products that are also known as free radical. Free radicals are damaging to the cells and is a leading cause of aging.
- Cool down phase of the aerobic workout
The cool down phase lasts from 5-10 minutes brings the physiological system back to its resting level at a gradual pace. A gradual reduction in cardiac output after vigorous work out is considerably more safe than an abrupt stopping of the aerobic activity. This gradual cool down gives our heart time to get used to the decrease in blood flow and decrease in oxygenation and gives it time to rest. One of the best cooling down exercises includes slow walking.
Running guru Kenneth Cooper, M.D. reports a study by his research group at the Cooper Aerobic Center in Dallas in which 3 groups of pre-menopause women were trained to walk 3 miles a day, 3 days a week, for 6 months at various speeds. A 4th non-walking group served as a control. The interesting finding is that for those who are walking at a 20-minute per mile pace, the aerobic fitness increased by 4%. For those walking at 15-minute per mile pace, the increase in aerobic fitness was 9%. Finally for those who were jogging at 12-minute per mile pace, the aerobic capacity increased by 14%, more than tripled that of the slowest walker. In fact, the energy expenditure and heart rate within the group were equivalent to those women who ran 9-minute miles. The lesson to learn is that for both weight loss and aerobic fitness, the faster you go, the more fuel you use, the better your heart and your metabolism responds. While we know that the higher the intensity, the better the cardiovascular and aerobic fitness, any aerobic exercise program must be tailored to your specific needs, especially if you are over age 35. We now know that over-exercise is counter-productive and does not increase longevity. For anti-aging purposes, therefore you should perform the aerobic exercise that will keep your heart rate at about approximately 70%-80% of your maximum heart rate (MHR) while expending approximate 2,000 kilo-calories per week in divided sessions.
It is important that you understand the variety of cardiovascular exercise training methods in your program. If you are training for competitive sport or a particular race, you may want to consider interval training as well as component training to add to your regimen. Interval training is an intermediate form of cardiovascular training.
Men burn 10-15% more calories for the same exercise than women due to bigger muscle size. If you are a woman, you would have to work about 10% harder than if you were a man.
Interval training consists of repeated intervals of relatively high intensity events such as jogging or running or sprinting incongruent with relatively light intensity events such as walking. The light interval would be done in range from 50-70% of your maximum heart rate while the hard interval training would range from 85%-100% of your maximum heart rate. As mentioned earlier, interval training is highly desirable for the competitive athlete. It is also interesting and beneficial for anti-aging purposes if provided as a break in routine and to train your body to adapt to different stresses from different activity. Interval training also causes a rise in our base metabolic rate (BMR) after the exercise has ended. This increase has effectively cause a body to burn more calorie and keep our fat off. It is, therefore, especially good if you want to reduce the fat in your body.
Component training is a method combining several types of cardiovascular exercises, one immediately after another. For example, you would jog for 15 minutes on a treadmill followed by 15 minutes on the bicycle and then 15 minutes of swimming. This is somewhat equivalent to a mini-triathlon event. Component training offers a variety to the normal routine and is good for aerobic training. Note that the heart cannot recognize whether the calories burned come from bicycle training or treadmill training or a rowing machine. The key in this particular training method is to utilize different parts of your body and to give you a slight variety so your motivation is being kept up.
While cardiovascular exercise forms an important weapon within the anti-aging exercise arsenal, it is by no means the only magic bullet. An optimum anti-aging program involves a combination of aerobic exercise, proper diet supplements, and weight training program so that your body has adequate lean body mass to carry you through an active lifestyle. All anti-aging exercise programs must be proceeded with a good flexibility-training program lasting 5-10 minutes as well as a cool down stretching exercise immediately after training. With regards to nutrition, it is important that our body and muscles are replenished with the proper nutrients after an exercise program. During exercise, our energy comes from a substance called glycogen, what your body makes from carbohydrates. Keeping in proper perspective and providing proper nutrients will ensure that our muscles have the key components to rebuild the cells and prevent using our existing reserves as a reservoir of energy for aerobic function.
If improving your appearance is your primary motivation for cardiovascular exercise other than anti-aging, then your mirror is your best gauge. The scale, unfortunately, is not a good indicator because we could be gaining muscles and losing fat and that will not show up on the scale. The measurement of a lean body mass as well as a percentage of body fat is a good indicator as it gives you a good gauge of how your body composition is changing. Ideally, with a good cardiovascular and weight training exercise, you should be losing fat and gaining lean muscle mass. Your body composition should change accordingly.
You can also measure your progress by duration and intensity of your cardiovascular exercise routine. If you are able to increase your exercise duration or find that you are making the same progress but with less effort, then your cardiac health is improving. The simplest way is to jog continuously for one mile at a comfortable pace and measure the time it takes. You know you are in excellent cardiac shape if your time is less than 8 minutes. If you can do it within 11-13 minutes, you've achieved anti-aging benefits.
Ultimately, your progress is best measured by how you feel. When you are consistent in your cardiovascular program, chances are you will feel better, have more energy and a better outlook in life. This may take a few weeks, but it will come. You will realize that your daily tasks have become easier and that the activities and sports you enjoy will not only become easier but also become more enjoyable. Your friends will notice the significant change in you after you have been consistently on the program. Anti-aging is a life-long process and that does not yield immediate results. Many of the benefits will only be apparent years later.
Cardiovascular exercise performed immediately after a full meal is not recommended. You should wait at least 60-90 minutes after a full meal before engaging in any kind of intensive cardiovascular exercise. The reason is simple. After a full meal, most of your blood supply goes to your stomach area to help the stomach to digest the food. Blood flow to other vital organs decreases. The larger the amount of food you eat, the longer the time you should wait before beginning aerobic exercise.
Another factor that increases risk of injury and complication is exercising in hot weather. Your body is used to a certain level of perspiration where sweat is taken out of your body and evaporated at a rate that your body can sustain. In a hot weather where there is excessive perspiration, it would only place increased stress into your body. To overcome this, try the following tips:
- Allow 5-7 days to accommodate to hot environment.
- Avoid training at the hottest part of the day that is usually between 11am and 5pm, especially during the summer.
- Be well hydrated by taking in lots of water prior to the workout.
- During exercise, drink plenty of fluids along the way especially if it is a long aerobic session such as a road race.
- Monitor your heart rate and do not go above your targeted aerobic heart rate during the course of the activity. If necessary, slow down your rate of exercise or shorten your aerobic sessions so that you are in a comfortable position throughout the workout.
Pollutants have an adverse effect on our bodies. Pollutants are oxidants and cause oxidation of our cells resulting in free radicals.
While fresh air is available outdoors, exposure to oxidants such as ozone, carbon monoxide and sulfur dioxide from car exhaust can be detrimental to your health.
Walking is an exercise for all ages. Young and old love to walk. Walking is particularly good for anyone over 40 because of its safety. Rarely do you hurt your ligaments, injure your legs or your tight or knees after walking. Walking is also simple and easily adaptable to busy schedules. A quick walk can burn as many calories as slow jog. Besides, other benefits include increased cardio-respiratory health, decreased body fat, decreased weight and decrease risk of heart disease. The key to proper walking is suitable footwear. While there are specialized walking shoes available at most shoe stores, many people prefer good running shoes with adequate cushion especially at the heel as well as the forefoot and the mid-sole area.
Always warm up, stretch and cool down during the walking session. Begin walking slowly for 5-10 minutes at 15-20 minute per mile pace in order to increase circulation of blood to your calves, quadriceps and hamstrings. As you build up after the warm up phase, you can walk at a faster pace. Concentrate on your form, having the heel strike first onto the road and follow by rolling motion and lift up after the mid-sole. As you walk, remember to keep your back straight, your abdominal tight and pump your arms back and forth naturally. Gauge your progress by the amount of time you spend walking rather than by the intensity at first. Whether you are a world class walker or a novice, you take almost the same number of steps each minute during this exercise process. The goal, therefore, is not to walk fast but walk at a pace that is sufficient to get your heart rate up to your targeted exercise heart rate.
Walking On Treadmill
Walking on treadmill allows advantages in that you can walk and exercise during anytime of the day, any time of the year without exposure to adverse environmental factors. Walking on the treadmill, however, can be slightly boring and it takes sometime to get used to it, especially in the beginning. For the beginner, start the treadmill belt running at slow speed. If needed, hold on to the handrail in front or beside you while walking until you feel comfortable. Often times, a trainer by your side may be a good safety precaution when you get started. Do not close your eyes while running because you will need your eyes to help maintain balance. There is always a safety catch with each treadmill that allows the treadmill to stop automatically in case the safety cord is pulled. This simple but highly effective precaution measure should be taken regardless whether you are a beginner or an advance treadmill walker or jogger.
Jogging, an excellent cardiovascular exercise is also popular because of its simplicity and adaptability to busy schedule. People of all ages can jog although it is more appropriate for those in good shape and those who are not more than 30-40 pounds overweight and have no knee problems. Like any exercise, jogging can have its pitfalls and you must be aware of these. First of all, you must concentrates on the form of your running. The back must be straight, the hands in a natural and relaxed position. The foot must land on the heel first, followed by a rolling motion to the mid-sole and take off according. Try not to land on your mid-sole with each stride as you will be sprinting in that particular posture and you would be tired relatively quickly. If you hear a "thump" sound on the ground as you land, chances are you are landing improperly. Concentrating on your form and your posture during the run is an important way to get started. Do not compare yourself with other runners who may be more advanced than you. Whether you are an Olympic runner or a novice jogger, researches have shown that your foot strikes the road approximately 150-180 times per minute. What this means is that it doesn't matter whether you are running an Olympic pace or just slow jogging around your neighborhood, the amount of trauma sustained by your knee and your cartilage is the same. Many people are totally unaware of this important fact. Try it yourself and see if it is true. Excessive exercise to complete a certain distance is not beneficial from an anti-aging perspective. In other words, if you take 5 hours to complete a marathon as compared to a world class athlete, then essentially your knees are getting twice as much pounding as compared to those who take two and a half hours to complete the same race. The smarter way from the anti-aging perspective and the preservation of our joints is to exercise in such a way to maximize aerobic capacity based on moderate exercise level.
Interval training as well as component training techniques It is also important to gradually increase the duration before you increase the intensity.may be used from time to time for specific goals such as race preparation. It also gives a slight variety to the sometimes boring routine of just running on a day-to-day basis.
Always warm up, stretch and cool down during the jogging session. Begin the session by jogging at low intensity or even a fast walk. This will stretch your calves, quadriceps and hamstring muscles. After the exercise session, cool down by walking first for 5-10 minutes followed by stretching of the exercised muscles as before.
Cycling is a non-weight bearing exercise that is especially good for the over-weight or the elderly person. Stationary cycling is preferred over outdoor cycling for the elderly or during inclement weather. Cycling outdoors is a perfect activity for those who do not like walking or jogging. Cycling is a good exercise for a variety of fitness levels. It is important to adjust the height of the seat so that so that the leg that is at the bottom of the down-stroke is almost but not quite completely extended when foot is on the pedal. If the seat is too low, your leg muscles will feel tired more easily. This will limit your performance. Numerous forms of padded seats are also available with cushions to reduce the strain on your buttocks.
The pedaling speed can vary depending on the fitness level and comfort. As usual, always warm up, stretch and cool down during the cycling session. Begin each exercise by pedaling very slowly at low level of resistance for 5-10 minutes. This stretches the calves, quadriceps and hamstrings. As the exercise stretch and progresses, the resistance can increase as well as the intensity. Duration of the exercise can be increased gradually. Interval training as well as compulsive training are wonderful variations to this particular form of exercise and give you a fresh perspective.
Stair-stepping is an excellent form of cardiovascular exercise. Aside from the obvious aerobic benefits, it is also easy on the bones, joints and ligaments. For those people who have orthopedic limitations that limits repetitive pounding of body weight during activity such as running or jogging, this offers a good alternative. Stair steppers are relatively easy to use. For safely reasons, do consult a trainer to make sure that you have the right technique. Especially important is to grab the handrail and step onto the pedal. Begin stepping by lifting each foot as if you were walking up the steps while holding on to the hand rail or by pumping your arms back and forth once you feel more comfortable. Do not push the pedal down by simply lifting your feet one after another. As usual, your back should be straight and your abdominal tight. This posture is very important so that you do not create excessive strain on your back muscles. Do not lean over the machine or the handrail. This decreases the work performed and can result in injury.
Step at a comfortable speed that allows you to stay in the middle pedal range. Do not try to extend the pedal all the way down to the full range unless you are setting on or off.
Always warm up, stretch and cool down during the stair-stepping session. Begin each session with a 5-10 minute warm up, followed by intense work out and end with a cool down session. To dismount, stand still and allow the pedal to settle to the floor.
Rowing is another excellent cardiovascular and aerobic choice. Rowing machines offer a good alternative for those who have orthopedic problems and are unable to run or jog. Computerized rowing machines also offer a fun way of doing cardiovascular exercises. Sit on the seat of the rowing machine and secure your feet to the ankles in the front part of the machine. With your body leaning slightly forward, move forward on the roller. Join your knees up to your chest. It is important to maintain a good posture during the rowing exercises in order to preserve your muscles. Your head should be up and your arms extended straight in front of you. Push back your legs, straighten your back to an upright position, and pull the handle to your abdomen. Keep your back straight and abdomen tight at all times. Bring yourself forward by pulling with your leg, leaning forward and extending your arms in front of you. A good rate is approximately 20-30 rows per minute.
Always start your rowing session slowly for the warm up, lasting 5-10 minutes. Make sure your posture is proper and that you are increasing the circulation to your legs and your upper arm muscles during the rolling process. After you are fully warmed up, then start your intense exercise session. It is also important to cool down towards the end of the session. When you get off the rowing machine, do your stretches as well. Rowing machine can be incorporated as part of component training program within the anti-aging cardiovascular exercise program. It adds variety to the overall training program as well as it works different parts of the body.
Participation in aerobic class is a great form of cardiovascular exercise. They are fun and they are motivational because most of the time, you participate in a group session. The support from fellow members keeps you going and keeps the session enjoyable. To gain significant benefit, you should participate in aerobic classes for at least 20-30 minutes and for at least 3 times a week. Aerobics require a certain degree of motor skill and coordination and may take more time to learn compared to other cardiovascular exercises. During the secessions, It is often intimidating for students to watch the instructors moving quickly from one routine to another while the rest of the students try to catch up. The important thing is not to be embarrassed and not to worry about it. The instructor is a professional in the field and does it every day. Your job is to follow as much as possible and enjoy yourself. The key to anti-aging exercise program is to enjoy yourself while achieving a targeted heart rate and burning off excessive calories. It is fruitless to compare yourself with the instructor who is a professional doing the same routine day in and day out.
As usual, be sure to include a warm up stretch and cool down every exercise, class or video. Each class should begin with 5-10 minutes of low intensity movement followed by stretching of the muscles that will be used during the exercise session such as the calves and the quadriceps. After the aerobic session, you should cool down with low intensity movements or by walking 5-10 minutes and then stretching the same muscle groups. This allows the muscles to return to the original metabolic state prior to the beginning of the aerobic exercise. The proper footwear is very important in an aerobic class, stabilized aerobic shoes are available in most shoe stores and they usually have very good cushion and support especially for side to side actions. If you have orthopedic, limitations, try to take the class that is low impact to start off with and which match your functional and aerobic capacity.
Swimming is an excellent non weight bearing cardiovascular exercise. It is great for those with chronic limitation or recent injuries. It is not as easily accessible as jogging but definitely just as good if not better because of its low impact and non-weight bearing qualities. Swimming generally requires a higher level of skill and thus takes longer to learn than other cardiovascular exercises. You may want to take swimming lessons to improve your breathing and your coordination skills if you plan to take this sport seriously. Similar to cross- country skiing, you cannot swim without using all the muscles in your body and it is, therefore, a fantastic aerobic exercise. As usual with any other exercise, always warm up, stretch and cool down during the exercise. Begin swimming at low intensity for 5-10 minutes while you warm up your muscles required for swimming, then build up towards a high intensity aerobic session for 20-30 minutes. Try to use a shallow lap pool, just in case you get cramps halfway through the exercise session that can happen from time to time. Incorporating swimming with a cycling and a jogging session would be equivalent to doing a triathlon. This has been tremendously popular in recent years and its popularity is growing due to the variety it offers.
Those who are not keen to do a pure aerobic exercise may want to consider dancing as a form of exercise. Dancing incorporates the whole body and the benefits are enormous. It is a great way to give your heart a work out and also to get over the inhibition to be more comfortable with our bodies. Dancing gives us permission to use our pelvis in a socially acceptable way.
There are enormous additional cardiovascular exercises such as hiking, rope jumping, cross-country skiing, basketball and tennis. Regardless of what activity you choose, they all have cardiovascular benefits. Activities that do not provide as much cardiovascular benefits include golf, softball and bowling. Regardless of what cardiovascular activities that you do, the following guidelines should form guide you on what form of exercise to do.
- Does the cardiovascular exercise offer a sustained repetitive movement using large muscle groups such as your legs?
- Does your activity allow you to continually be active for 30-45 minutes?
- Are you able to maintain an intensity of 60-80% of your maximum heart rate?
- Can you continue to pursue this activity 3-5 days a week in order to obtain significant benefits?
Don't forget that the key to anti-aging exercise program is not so much for competitive sports purposes but to exercise your body in such a way to promote youthfulness stress reduction as well as increase your longevity. Research now shows that the target aerobic exercise should be of moderate intensity and to allow you to burn off 2,000 kilocalories per week at a heart rate of approximately 70-80% of your maximum heart rate. Regardless of what exercise you do, those are the key parameters within which you should formulate your exercise program.
Exercise is a key ingredient in weight reduction and can help to obtain optimum heath. Exercise not only increases muscle tone but also alters the metabolic rate in our bodies. A fit individual will burn more calories than a less fit one, even at rest.
Exercise need not be a struggle. If you make it fun by choosing an activity you enjoy, you will more easily incorporate it into your daily life and more rapidly enjoy the enormous physiological, psychological and biochemical benefits of exercise. To avoid boredom, you may wish to vary your daily routine. For example, walk one day, cycle the next and perhaps swim another day. If walking is the core of your routine, you can supplement it with recreational activities such as golf or tennis. The point is to do something, exercise every day.
To burn 300 calories a day, you have to perform aerobics equivalent to 30 minutes of rowing machine, bicycle or swimming; approximately 35 minutes of stationary bike or slow jog; approximately 40 minutes of brisk walk; approximately 80 minutes of slow walk.
To burn 500 calories, you have to do stenusous bicycling for one hour; or cross-country skiing for 45 minutes; or jogging 45 minutes at 5 miles per hour.
Cardiovascular exercise is an important pillar of any anti-aging exercise program. By following the instructions and precautions outlined here, we hope that you will have a wonderful time enjoying yourself while achieving optimum health. Your greatest challenge, however, is not learning new exercises or proper technique, it is to put it to action. Recognizing that your heart disease is a leading cause of death, consistent exercise will go a long way to reducing that risk and improving your longevity. Travel with your running shoes, travel with your gym shorts. Whatever opportunity you get, no matter how short the period during the day, take some time to do cardiovascular exercise. A 5-minute session of rope-jumping will make you feel invigorated, especially after a long travel or stressful day. Keep a jump rope in your office and keep one set at home. Including a cardiovascular training into your busy schedule is an adjustment and may be difficult. But if you have already taken the time to read this chapter, chances are you have been motivated to understand that this is the right thing to do and all that is left now is to do it!