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  • Tips on managing Stress
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  • How to target stubborn fat areas
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  • What muscle soreness really means
  • Learn how exercise affects your mood
  • How to choose the right health club
  • Weight loss and diet myths revealed
  • Flexibility, how and when to stretch
  • How to build personal motivation
  • How to conquer procrastination
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Sign up to the get fit newsletter
Sign up for the ''Get Fit'' Newsletter
  • Tips on managing Stress
  • Ways to stay motivated
  • The benefits of resistance training
  • How to improve your metabolism
  • Learn why "conventional" diets fail
  • How to target stubborn fat areas
  • Healthy and tasty recipes
  • What muscle soreness really means
  • Learn how exercise affects your mood
  • How to choose the right health club
  • Weight loss and diet myths revealed
  • Flexibility, how and when to stretch
  • How to build personal motivation
  • How to conquer procrastination
Email:
Name:
This Month In Body
  • On the Sidelines
    You were making such progress toward your weight loss and fitness goals only to have a simple injury slow you down. But take heart! Unless you’ve suffered a serious injury such as a broken back or concussion, there are ways to stay in shape following injury. Read >>
  • Be Good to Your Heart
    Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women, so protecting its health is more than a good idea. It’s vital. Sometimes, however, just eating the right stuff isn’t enough. Read >>
  • Oops!
    Take a look at your workouts to see if you’re you making any of the most common mistakes in the gym. If you are, it’s time to make some changes. Read >>
  • Why Resist Your Workout?
    Many people tend to focus more on cardio and forget the benefits of resistance training, but a balanced workout routine will include at least two sessions of resistance training a week. Keep reading to discover seven reasons why resistance training is important. Read >>
Health and Fitness News

Be Good to Your Heart

Exercise is one of the best things you can do to care for your heart. Here’s why.

Your heart is one of the body’s five vital organs. It’s also the hardest working. Each day, the heart beats an average of 100,000 times, pumping 2,000 gallons of blood throughout your body’s 60,000 miles of blood vessels. As long as you’re alive, your heart never catches a break. Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, your heart is busy keeping you alive.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women, so protecting its health is more than a good idea. It’s vital. Sometimes, however, just eating the right stuff isn’t enough. Regular exercise is essential for heart health. People who lead sedentary lifestyles have double the risk of heart disease than active folks, so don’t be one of them!

Your heart needs exercise and plenty of it. Here’s why.

It Strengthens the Heart

As you run, swim, cycle, or lift weights, your cardiovascular system steps up its game. With exercise, your muscles work harder, which in turn forces your heart to pump faster and harder to send un-oxygenated blood to the lungs and oxygenated blood to fuel the rest of the body. The heart is only one of the body’s many muscles that become stronger due to exercise, but without a strong heart, everything else is in trouble.

Someone who’s in shape will generally have a lower resting heart and a strong heart is able to pump blood more efficiently. This means it doesn’t have to strain as hard to do its job.

It Lowers Blood Pressure

Blood pressure is how hard blood pushes against the walls of blood vessels. Too much pressure, also known as hypertension, can lead to dangerous health conditions including stroke, heart attack, heart failure, damage to blood vessels, and kidney disease. As exercise makes your heart stronger, it takes less effort to pump blood. When your heart doesn’t have to strain, there’s less force on your blood vessels and your blood pressure goes down. The benefits of exercise on blood pressure stop if you quit exercising on a regular basis.

It Leads to Weight Loss

Along with a balanced diet, exercise helps you shed excess pounds and maintain a healthy weight. The extra weight you carry around means your heart has to work harder to pump blood to every cell. Weight loss also protects your heart by lowering high blood pressure, triglycerides, and LDL cholesterol.

It Reduces Stress

It’s no wonder you’re stressed when there’s an unexpected bill, problems in your marriage, or tension at work. Stress doesn’t just put you in a bad mood, but it’s also a major risk factor for heart disease. Unchecked stress can lead to high blood pressure, high cholesterol, overeating, inactivity, or smoking, all of which are bad for your heart. A daily dose of exercise is an effective way of dealing with stress before it negatively affects your health.

It Creates New Blood Vessels

Cardio exercise is good for your heart because it helps create new blood vessels. Strength training makes blood vessels larger. Having more places for blood to flow improves circulation, and new blood vessels are especially important as you age. Aging causes blood vessels to weaken, making them susceptible to clots and cholesterol buildup, but exercise protects and strengthens vessels from damage and blockage.