Exercise: the best medicine for your heart
If you love your heart, take it for a walk, bicycle, swimming or camping. Physical activity keeps your heart strong and healthy and reduces your risk of fatal heart attack and other cardiovascular problems. What kind of physical activity is best to get these benefits for your heart health? Here some concepts so you can apply them in your life.
What kinds of exercises are best for the heart?
The physical activities that make your heart beat faster than usual and have an intensity that you can sustain are called aerobic exercises. This type of exercise enhances heart health. Some examples of these activities are:
- Using an Elliptical Treadmill or Escalator
- Jump the rope
- Climbing stairs
- Team sports such as football or basketball
How intense should my routine be?
The intensity of an exercise depends on how difficult it is for you. Walking quietly on the beach, for example, would be low intensity for most people. On the other hand, an energetic walk is considered of moderate intensity. To benefit your heart, you must work with a moderate or vigorous intensity level.
How do I know that my heart works within an optimal routine?
Experts recommend using the “test of the talk” to see how hard you work.
You may also like to read: Mindfulness exercises
If you exercise at a pace that allows you to talk, but not to sing, you are likely to be using the correct intensity level.
How much aerobic exercise do I need each week?
That depends on the intensity of your routine. As a general rule, you should perform at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity per week. You may need more physical activity if you try to lose weight.
Precautions for Exercise
Almost anyone can perform aerobic exercises. However, if you have a chronic medical condition, ask your doctor about the type of physical activity that is best for you. You should also consult your doctor before starting a new exercise program if:
- You have not had physical activity in the past, especially if you have risk factors for heart disease.
- You plan to carry out a very vigorous exercise regimen.
- You are middle-aged or older.
- You feel dizzy, breathless, or you feel pain or tightness in your chest, neck, shoulder, or arm during or after physical activity.
To determine your heart rate during exercise, stop moving and take your pulse for 10 seconds. Multiply this number by six to calculate the beats per minute.