The first type of exercise is Cardiovascular exercise. Cardiovascular exercise is any exercise that gets your heart rate up and keeps it there for a sustained period of time. Examples are walking, running, biking, swimming, or working out on a StairMaster, elliptical, or treadmill machine.
Performing regular cardiovascular exercise strengthens and tones the muscles of your arms and legs and of course, burns lots of calories to help with weight control.
But have you thought about this? Regularly getting your heart pumping strengthens the muscles of your heart and tones your arteries as well. Not only does it enhance your immune system like I’ve talked about before, but it also reduces stress and boosts brainpower too.
Cardio helps reduce stress because you’re physically burning it out of your system every time you exercise. Stress causes your muscles to tighten. You’ve felt that when you’ve gone into the “Fight-or-Flight” Response. That tension is relieved when you work out those chronically tight muscles. Also, neurologically, there is a relaxation response that is triggered after exercise that further allows the muscles to soften and release the stress and tension you were carrying before your workout.
Studies also show that all of the movement you’re doing provides massive stimulation to your brain which helps keep it healthy and alive as well. There are nerve receptors in your joints called mechano-receptors which feed information up to your brain about how the joint is moving and where it is in space. Mechano-receptors are how you can tell, if your knee is bent or straight or if your head is tilted to your ear or turned slightly to one side. Even if you’re eyes are closed and you can’t see it, these receptors allow you to feel it and know what’s going on in your body.
When you get your whole body moving, tons of information is sent up to your brain telling it everything you’re doing in your exercise. Your brain loves this stimulation and needs it to keep functioning properly and functioning at its best. This is why after a workout, so often you might suddenly find the answer to a problem you’ve been having. Or you might find it easier to sit back down to tackle a task you’ve been working on. This is because your brain and your mind feel clearer and sharper.
*Adapted from the Being Well Lifestyles Home Study Course by Dr. Jay Warren.
Drawing on over two decades of experience as a hands-on holistic practitioner, Dr. Jay Warren is a primary healthcare provider and licensed chiropractor in the San Diego area. He has spent tens of thousands of clinical hours helping his patients achieve their optimal health potential through holistic approaches bolstered by years of personal experimentation, education and research. Dr. Jay creates customized plans integrating exercise, nutrition and stress management strategies to overcome a myriad of health maladies. For more information, call 619-239-0053, email Info@BeingWellLifestyles.com or visit www.BeingWellLifestyles.com.