You are probably tired of hearing about the benefits of cardio exercise since every media outlet is talking about it.
However, this unusual persistence should tell you something, right?
Cardio exercise is extremely beneficial for a variety of reasons, which we will cover in this article.
Note that the nature of the exercise you perform is not as important as consistency; therefore, you should go for a routine that you enjoy instead of following what everyone else is doing.
In this article, we will cover the benefits of staying fit and how it could optimize your general wellbeing.
The benefits of cardio exercise for your health
Being regularly active has never been more important, as the rates of organic and mental illnesses are constantly on the rise.
Here is a shortlist of benefits you can expect from regular physical activity:
1. Weight loss
In a 2012 study, scientists compared several weight loss exercises to see which one yields the best results.
The main two forms of exercise were cardiovascular and strength training.
The study concluded that aerobic training was more effective at reducing body fat and the risk of numerous conditions (e.g., heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure).
2. Physical strength
Although most people think that they can only acquire strength by performing resistance training, researchers found that cardiovascular training also increases physical strength by improving endurance, regulating metabolism, and increasing VO2 max.
Additionally, cardio exercise can drastically improve your joint flexibility, which further powers up your physical strength.
3. Muscle growth
Contrary to popular belief, aerobic exercise can also lead to muscle hypertrophy and increased lean muscle mass. In fact, several studies confirmed this finding.
Obviously, the effect is less prominent relative to strength training, but it is there, nonetheless.
4. Mental health improvement
In a study published by the Frontiers in Psychiatry in 2018, researchers analyzed the effects of physical activity on major depressive disorder (MDD).
The study found that exercise is an extremely beneficial tool that reduces the severity of MDD symptoms and increases patients’ life-spans.
5. Boosted metabolism
Regular exercise inadvertently boosts your basal metabolic rate (BMR).
For those unfamiliar with BMR, here is a quick definition:
BMR is a metabolic parameter used to estimate the number of calories needed for your organs to function per day.
It is subject to several factors, including age, sex, body type, diet, lean muscle mass, degree of physical activity, and genetics.
Thankfully, exercise increases BMR dramatically, which helps you burn fat as you sleep.
Cardio training provides the body with a myriad of health benefits that go beyond physical appearance. The list of benefits cited above is by no means comprehensive.
We hope that this article highlighted the main aspects of fitness and how you can use cardiovascular exercises and strength training to optimize your health.
Here’s to your health!
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Dr. Kevin Crawford
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Disclaimer: This information is provided as an educational service only, and is not intended as a substitute for medical advice. Anyone seeking specific medical advice or assistance should consult his or her doctor or orthopedic surgeon.