Cardio – Beneficial or Just Pure Torture?
‘Cardio’ is that one word that can strike fear in the best of us at times, quickly followed by the phrase ‘Leg Day’.
Cardio = Sweat that secretes out of every inch of your body at speed of 200mph accompanied by tears of torture as your eyes deflate whilst assessing your calorie burn on your activity watch.
Then those nagging thoughts of doubt scream in your head “Why am I actually doing this to myself, is there any benefits to this torture?”
In actual fact, there are 5 very good benefits to a cardio workout that some people may overlook.
The heart is the most important muscle in the body so why wouldn’t you look after it? At the young age of 57 my dad past away from heart failure, so this subject is very close to me and encouraged me to study Cardio Vascular health in depth.
We need to stack the odds in our favour, we do this by looking after our heart health. Keeping our blood pressure low and in the healthy range results in less stress being put on our artery walls. By doing this it will decrease the risk of coronary heart diseases or strokes.
Did you know there are 2.3million people in the UK living with coronary heart disease?
Cardiovascular exercise is the quickest way of burning excess calories stored in the body i.e. FAT.
To burn FAT, we need to stimulate the fat cells through the thermogenic process and one of the best ways to do this is through cardiovascular activities.
When our body carries too much fat it puts stress on all your internal organs and not just your heart!
Those cardio queens don’t seem so silly now do they?
Carrying out cardio activity actually improves your mood! (Yes, I am serious!)
When we carry out cardiovascular exercise our body releases a feel-good hormone called endorphins these are our natural anti-depressants, combating depression and fatigue.
People who start the day with some form of cardiovascular exercise have a better outlook and a more productive day.
Recovery rate is the time it takes for your pulse to return to normal after exercise. The quicker the recovery the stronger and healthier your cardiovascular system is.
The good news for those with a slow recovery rate is that you are able to increase your recovery rate by performing cardio-based exercises.
If used wisely, a burst of cardio after a weight training session will help enable your body to flush extra nutrients to the area that has just been worked and help rid the muscles of the by-products that are caused from weight training.
This, in turn, will help decrease the likely hood of DOMS (delayed onset of muscle soreness) enabling you to recover fully more faster and return to training sooner.
Increase energy levels
Did you know that performing cardiovascular exercises we are making our body more efficient!
By making our heart stronger and our arteries cleaner (reducing the amount of atherosclerosis, a furring of the artery walls) therefore increasing the amount of oxygen carried to the working muscles and increasing the number of waste products to be removed.
The less energy your body needs to help keep you alive, the more energy you have to go and live life.
So now that you know more about cardio and the benefits it carries, go out and start to enjoy it!