Dr Arvind Kohli
January 1st is a day that holds new meaning for many people. For many, it’s a day of hope and excitement. It indicates a fresh start. A chance to begin again. No matter what New Year’s Day looks like, it’s important to remember that each day is a new beginning. A chance to move forward and make positive changes in life. A change to a healthy life style, change to healthy diet, a new set of resolutions for betterment, because nobody likes to go backwards in life
Cardiovascular endurance is an important aspect of being fit and healthy, It is how well the body’s circulatory and respiratory systems can supply oxygen to the body during sustained physical activity,” Having good cardiovascular endurance not only means that a person can run further or swim more laps, but it also offers improvements for physical and mental health. Some of the other benefits include a stronger and more efficient heart function, improved breathing mechanics, lower resting heart rate and reduced risk of heart disease and stroke. Improving your cardiovascular endurance could also improve your ability to metabolize fat during exercise
Effects of Aerobic Exercise
One can raise level of cardiovascular endurance by doing exercises that increases heart and breathing rates, or Aerobic exercisewhich is the most important part of physical fitness. To achieve cardiovascular endurance,one should exercise aerobically 30 minutes per day, 3 to 7 days per week.
While doing aerobic exercise, the body responds in the following ways: heart pumps more efficiently.lungs work better.blood volume and delivery system are improved. resting heart rate is lowered and heart pumps out more blood which is physiologically very good The muscles.ligaments, tendons, and bones getting stronger and body is able to use more fat as an energy source.
Benefits of cardiovascular endurance
Building cardiovascular endurance helps a person to exercise longer But, this performance benefit is just the tip of the iceberg. Here are a few more perks of cardiovascular endurance:
Better sleep: Achieving physical fitness leads to normal sleep patterns,
Less illness: Higher cardiorespiratory fitness is also associated with lower incidence of cardiovascular diseases, hypertension, diabetes, and heart failure,. In addition a good sleep helps in boosting immune system.. So, a bolstered immune system is an indirect benefit of having good cardiovascular fitness.
Lifestyle improvements: better cardiovascular fitness can help with seemingly simple daily tasks, like carrying heavy groceries, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, keeping up with friends with much more ease
Better mood: Aerobic exercise helps in relieving tension and anxiety.. For some people, exercise is as effective as antidepressants at lessening depression.
Staying independent longer: Exercising makes one stronger and can help to stay mobile longer. It can also lower risk of falls and injuries. Fitness will improve the quality of life as one ages
Modes of Increasing Cardiovascular Endurance
Almost everyone can benefit from physical exercise. However, not every exercise is right for everyone. Cardiac patients must Talk to treating doctor about the best type of exercise for them.
Start from basics. If new to exercise, one may benefit from as little as 15 minutes of exercise. Working way up to 30 minutes per day at least 3 days per week. Doing this should result in a measurable improvement in cardiovascular endurance in eight to 12 weeks.
Identify favourite mode: Aerobic exercise is any nonstop activity that uses large muscles and makes heart and lungs work harder. Its important to pick up one or rotate through many different modes. Some examples include: Walking, Running Jogging Hiking Swimming Dancing skiing Aerobics Rowing and various sports like squash
Donot exceed the limit: Doing the same type of exercise more than 5 days per week puts you at a higher risk for injuries. If someone wants to work out more than 5 days per week, change it up with exercises that use different muscle groups. Do some low- and then some high-impact activities to avoid too much stress on joints and muscles.
Build up gradually: one should aim to push slightly more than normal movement level. Its important to increase speed or distance no more than 10% to 20% each week. one should feel challenged, but not completely exhausted. For every 10 minutes of exercise, add 1 or 2 minutes weekly.
Warm up, cool down, and stretch: Start by working at a low level for 5 to 10 minutes to warm up. Then gradually build up upon work until limit is achieved
Measuring cardiovascular endurance?
There are a variety of different ways one can keep tabs on developing cardiovascular endurance
To Monitor heart rate. one can track a few different metrics, namely resting heart rate (RHR) and heart rate variability (HRV), When cardiovascular endurance improves, the resting heart rate comes down. On the other hand, higher heart rate variability can indicate greater levels of cardiovascular fitness and stress resilience, Both are stats many fitness watches or health tracking apps can store Or, one can measure pulse manually for resting heart rate.
Cardiovascular endurance is an important aspect of fitness-no matter where you’re at in your fitness journey. There are plenty of ways to build it and track your progress on your own and solid cardiovascular endurance comes with a long list of potential benefits, too, from making daily life a little easier to warding off illness.
(The author is Cardiothoracic &Vascular Surgeon GMC Jammu)