Cardiovascular exercise plays a major role in maintaining our heart health and capacity, our vascular (blood transport anatomy) systems, our ability to efficiently transport oxygen throughout the body (to keep alive and moving) and waste product removal from your body. The main concern that most people have is its role in helping weight loss.
To maintain ongoing results with our cardiovascular exercise, cycling it through simple highs and lows can keep us from becoming bored and promoting weight loss and health. It does not need to be simple and can give you a better chance of achieving your goals. A four-week cycle can look like this:
- Week one 100 minutes
- Week two 110 minutes
- Week three 120 minutes
- Week four 100 minutes (active rest week)
For the next four-week cycle, you begin with the amount completed on the second week of the last four-week cycle. In this case, 110 minutes. This structure can then lead into a bigger plan, for example, 12 weeks. Planning out your exercise in this manner alleviates the issue of having to constantly try and remember what you were supposed to be doing and can greatly increase your successful weight loss.
Your health tip – Meat and meat alternatives for protein and iron
When we look at our basic food groups, most people look at our meat sources as just the basics, red meat. Having a broader knowledge of meat and meat alternatives (especially white meats and nuts etc.) can help you ensure you are getting plenty of iron (which most ladies do not receive enough of in their diets) into the body for oxygen transport in the blood and the essential proteins required to grow and repair our body continually. Having a variety of sources in our diet also enables us to receive a greater variety of nutrients, vitamins and minerals we need.
Exercise of the week – Indoor rowing
This week we are looking at an exercise that is a great exercise for our cardiovascular capacity and uses all the muscles in our body. Tips for indoor rowing are:
- Take your time, start slow. Be comfortable with your technique before you try and increase the speed intervals.
- Aim for long, strong strokes, rather than faster, less controlled techniques. This will be more effective and energy efficient.
- Breathe out when you pull, taking a smooth breath in as you move forwards.
- If you feel pressure in the lower back or in the neck and shoulders that you are not sure about, stop.
- If it hurts, stop.
Your life tip
Take the time to organise your weekly schedule and the things you want to do. Be realistic in what you want to achieve by starting with a handful of tasks. Finishing those gives great satisfaction, compared to the disappointment when you don’t.
This week’s wise words
‘Be strong. A diamond is only a piece of coal that handled all that pressure.’
Have a great week and keep healthy in 2017. David.