LIKE THIS POST? Get these delivered right to your inbox

How Regular Exercise Keeps Your Heart Young

When you exercise on regular basis, good things happen: you become healthier, you lose excess weight, you become stronger and more flexible, and you boost your endurance as well as your metabolism. As if all these things weren’t enough, regular exercise does wonders for your internal organs as well. If you are worried about your heart or you suffer from a heart condition, there are still certain exercises you can do to stay fit and keep your heart young.

Exercise and blood pressure

Regular exercise is important for blood pressure too since it helps keep your arteries flexible as you age. As a result, your blood flow is improved and your blood pressure is normalized. Workouts, even mild ones, can lower the top number in your blood pressure readings in a healthy way, and this is as effective as some of the blood pressure medications you were prescribed. Some people with high blood pressure notice that they don’t even have to take blood pressure medication anymore, but it takes up to three months of regular exercise in order to notice a change in the pressure, and the benefits last only as long as you keep working out.

Heart condition and exercise

You might think that having a heart condition or undergoing a heart surgery is a sign that you should take care of yourself by avoiding exercise, but you’d be wrong. Even people who have had heart surgery should exercise in order to stay healthy, but before you hit the gym it’s important to talk to your doctor, electrophysiologist, or heart surgeon. Any form of exercise is good for you, it’s going to make your heart stronger, and you’ll be able to do more things without experiencing chest pain or other related symptoms.

Does the type of exercise matter?

The short answer is – yes, of course it does. Even if your health care provider assures you that you’re healthy, you shouldn’t push yourself too much or you’ll end up with more problems than in the beginning. You should pick a mild form of exercise, at least at first, and work your way up until you reach your full potential. Aerobic exercises are among the best for people with heart conditions because you can control the increase in your heartbeat. Power walking, riding a bike, light jogging, and swimming are among the best exercises you can start with and make your heart more efficient.

How your heart changes

Even though your heart becomes stronger, the muscle itself doesn’t, but rather the physiology around it has a positive effect on the function of the heart because your blood vessels become more flexible thus making your heart more efficient. Because your blood vessels become more elastic, they won’t be as susceptible to the buildup of plaque, which further leads to lower risk of heart disease. Over time, your heart rate will slow down because you’ve been training for a while, and you will be able to exercise longer before you start feeling tired. Training might not become easier, but you’ll definitely become stronger, and that’s a huge thing.

How much is enough?

We’ve already established that regular exercise is good for you, but just how much you should exercise on a daily or weekly basis to get the best results? It’s a government recommendation that you exercise about 150 minutes every week, which roughly translates to three days in the gym. Even if you’re not a fan of gyms, you can exercise every other day simply by going for a half an hour walk around the block or to the nearby park. Another important factor is your age as well as whether you have a heart condition, in which case you should consult your doctor before you start working out.

Finding motivation to work out might not be the problem, but staying motivated for a long time is difficult. This is why you should see exercise not only as a means to lose weight, but also as a way to improve your overall health, keep your heart young, and improve your mood. Making a habit out of exercise is a great way to stay in shape because for you, healthy lifestyle will become as important as brushing your teeth or removing your makeup after a long day.