Let’s first identify exactly what an aerobic exercise is. Aerobic exercises are also called endurance exercises. Aerobic exercises get your heart pumping faster than it would at rest and causes you to breathe harder. They make you sweat. That helps your heart strengthen and learn how to sent oxygen to all parts of the body quickly. The term aerobic is means something that lives or occurs in the presence of oxygen. When you run, your heart pumps faster and you breathe harder. Even walking increases your heart rate. So what can you count as aerobic exercise? There are a lot of activities.
Combine your strength building exercise with an aerobic workout.
If you’ve never heard of circuit training or HIIT—-high intensity interval training—, it’s time to learn. It’s a great way to cut time off your workout and get a great aerobic and strength building workout. In circuit training, you go from one exercise directly to the next, shortening the time between exercises. That gets your heart pumping faster and makes it an aerobic workout. HIIT is slightly different. It’s a way to modify your workout by doing the exercises at peak intensity for a short time and then switching to a recovery pace for an equal amount of time. You alternate between the two throughout the workout. It’s way to make any type of workout a good cardio and can even be used when walking.
Aerobic exercise varies based on three different things.
When you do aerobic exercise, one variation is the intensity of the workout. You’ll get more benefit the more vigorous it is, such as running, compared to a more moderate brisk walk. You’ll also get more benefit if you do it more frequently and get at least 150 to 300 minutes if it’s moderate or 75 to 150 minutes if it’s vigorous. Mall walkers provide an example of moderate aerobic exercise, so they need about a half hour to an hour a day five days a week. For vigorous exercise, like running, it takes about 15 minutes to a half hour a day to fill the need.
Strength building and running are aerobic, but so are some fun activities.
Do you love dancing, turn on the music every day and dance like nobody’s watching. Make it fast and give your heart a good workout. It’s fun and it counts as aerobic exercise. Ride bike with your bestie or the kids. It’s another aerobic exercise. Even doing brisk cleaning can be aerobic, but you have to hustle. Raking leaves, cleaning windows and rushing around to do chores can give your heart a workout and make your home a better place to live. You’ll also get household chores done faster and have time to play! That play can be even more aerobic exercise.
- You don’t have to get your entire aerobic workout done all at once. You can do it in ten minute blocks. In fact, a European study showed breaking it up to several 10-minute sessions was even better.
- Aerobic exercise can improve your health, besides aid in weight loss. It boosts your immune system and lowers cholesterol levels. It helps manage blood pressure and blood sugar levels, too. It can help your mental functioning and stave off dementia.
- Do you love rock climbing or skiing? Cross-country skiing is one of the best aerobic workouts. Swimming is another great aerobic workout. It’s a full body workout that is easy on the joints.
- If you don’t have the endurance to dance, run or walk for ten minutes, start where you can. If you can only walk to the end of the block, do that and build on it. It can help you build to the point you can do a half hour at a time or longer.
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