What is aerobic exercise? Aerobic exercise is any activity which gets blood pumping and muscle groups working. Also known as cardiovascular exercise, some examples of this form of exercise include brisk walking, running, cycling, and swimming. Here, we will discuss 10 health benefits of aerobic exercise.
Benefits of Aerobic Exercise
1. Improves cardiovascular health
Aerobic exercise is recommended for people at risk for heart disease. This is because exercise strengthens the heart and helps it pump blood more efficiently throughout the body. Equally important, cardiovascular exercise can help lower blood pressure and keep arteries clear by raising good cholesterol (HDL) and lowering bad cholesterol (LDL) levels in the blood. If you are specifically looking to lower cholesterol and blood pressure, aim for 30-40 minutes of moderate to vigorous intensity aerobic exercise 3 to 4 times a week.
2. Reduces risk of certain health problems
Moving from a sedentary lifestyle to one which involves a moderate amount of exercise can lead to significant improvements in health. Aerobic exercise reduces the risk of certain conditions, including heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, stroke, metabolic syndrome, and some types of cancer. Low-impact aerobic exercise like swimming can increase fitness in people who have arthritis. Regular exercise even has the potential to increase your lifespan.
3. Helps regulate blood sugar
Regular physical activity helps lower blood sugar and regulate insulin levels, while also keeping body weight in check. One study done on people with type 2 diabetes shows that any form of physical movement, whether aerobic or anaerobic, may produce these effects.
4. Fitness and endurance
Regular aerobic exercise improves cardiovascular fitness by increasing a person’s capacity to use oxygen. The heart’s capacity to send blood to the muscles is increased. Eventually, you may be able to attain a lower resting heart rate as well as a lower heart rate for the same workout intensity. As you get fitter, some activities will become easier. You’ll also be able to do the activity for longer. This is known as endurance. You will notice that you have developed stamina for everyday activities, not just for exercise.
5. Weight control
Diet and exercise are the main components of a weight loss program. But aerobic exercise can help you lose weight and keep it off. Aerobic exercise burns calories. Regular sessions of 30 to 60 minutes of low to moderate intensity exercise is important if you want to shed pounds. Of course, cutting calories can help reduce the amount of exercise needed for you to lose weight.
6. Reduces chronic pain
If you experience chronic back pain, low-impact cardiovascular exercise like aqua aerobics or swimming may help restore muscle function. Exercise can also aid in weight loss, which can further reduce chronic pain by putting less stress on the body during normal activities.
7. Strengthens immune system
Aerobic exercise activates the immune system in a good way. This may make you less susceptible to viral illnesses such as colds and flu. Regular aerobic exercise increases certain antibodies called immunoglobulins. This strengthens the immune system.
8. Keeps your mind sharp
Regular physical activity may help improve memory, reasoning, and thinking skills of older adults. It can help prevent dementia. Also, it can improve cognitive function in young adults.
9. Aids sleep
If you’re having trouble sleeping, try aerobic exercise. A study on people with chronic sleep issues showed that regular exercise combined with sleep hygiene is an effective treatment for insomnia. Better sleep quality and duration were reported by participants, as well as improvements in daytime wakefulness and vitality. However, exercising too close to bedtime may actually make it more difficult to sleep, so try to finish your workouts at least two hours before bedtime.
10. Boosts mood
Moving your body may help improve your mood. Aerobic exercise may ease depression, promote relaxation, reduce tension associated with anxiety, and instill a general sense of well-being. It can also improve sleep, allowing you to start the day with energy and positivity. Exercising, even for a short period, may be enough to boost your mood.
Experts recommend at least 150 minutes of moderate, or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise per week. Brisk walking and swimming are examples of moderate activity, while running and cycling are examples of vigorous activity. Hopefully, these benefits of aerobic exercise can provide the necessary motivation for you to get moving. Doing aerobic exercise regularly can help you live longer and healthier. The FITin56 program also makes getting aerobic exercise fun, so try it out!