How Often Should You Do Cardio?

It’s not uncommon for people to be itching for something to do after a week-long session at their jobs. It’s already tiring to be doing exercises and people would rather spend their spare time doing the things they love rather than the things they need.

Unfortunately, one of these things people need to be doing is exercise. The global pandemic has made it impossible for anyone to go outside but things are slowly changing for the better. More and more countries are slowly lifting quarantine (provided there are no new outbreaks and the cases are isolated).

One of the more popular exercises is jogging. This is some intensive cardio but people are probably doing other forms of cardio in their own homes without knowing it.

Aerobic vs Anaerobic Exercises

Jogging or simply doing runs on a treadmill is a type of aerobic exercise. Aerobic exercises are any activity that require your lungs to effectively exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide. The activities can range from low to high intensity.

Anaerobic exercises, on the other hand, don’t require intensive lung activity and are usually done in short bursts. This burns body fuel but doesn’t involve a cellular exchange of oxygen. In other words, anaerobic exercises are done in a short period of time.

You can perform aerobic and anaerobic exercises at gyms too. You can check Yogaworks or Soul Cycle for programs available to help you get started.

Examples of Aerobic Exercises

  • Walking or jogging
  • Running or Long distance cycling
  • Swimming
  • Heavy Household Chores

Examples of Anaerobic Exercises

  • Weightlifting
  • 100 Meter Sprints
  • High-Intensity Interval Training (More popularly known as the brand Crossfit)
  • Speed Cycling
  • Jumping Rope

Why Is Cardio Important?

Both aerobic and anaerobic exercise can be a form of cardio. Cardio, from the term itself, involves activities that increase your heart rate. Increasing your cardiovascular health will give you a lot of benefits.

Performing cardiovascular exercises means you will less likely get tired. If you find yourself panting after climbing two flights of stairs then that means you have to strengthen your heart’s ability to pump blood.

Having good circulation will make sure you recover from illnesses faster. Several studies have confirmed that circulation plays a vital role in fighting off an infection. It makes sure that your body can deliver white blood cells faster to the site of the infection. This will contribute to a speedier recovery. This will also mean wounds will heal faster.

People who do cardiovascular exercises will be more alert. The steady supply of blood to the brain makes sure you are attentive. This will help you enhance reflexes, do tasks without difficulty, improve concentration, and be in a better overall mood.

Doing cardiovascular exercises also helps you boost your metabolism. The cells in your body get increasingly efficient in processing sugar with the help of oxygen. This means you can burn calories faster. As a result, you will lose weight.

A healthy amount of physical stress involved in doing cardiovascular exercises will stimulate your bones to increase its density. This is the body’s natural response so it can withstand the pressure from jumping, sprinting, and any other physical activity that involves the use of major muscle groups.

Illnesses You Can Get From Being Sedentary

On the other end of cardio, a sedentary lifestyle has its consequences. It’s no surprise that the diseases involved in a lack of physical exercise involve the heart and lungs.

Researches and fitness experts say that your likelihood of developing heart diseases increases with the amount of time spent being inactive. 

You are also at risk of developing hypertension. This is your body’s way of telling you that you need to be more active. The hypertension results from hormones that make your blood vessels constrict in response to heavy activity, despite not doing anything.

This is also the reason why sedentary people are more likely to have mood disorders. The lack of exercise confuses the brain on whether it should produce more serotonin or dopamine. The ratio of serotonin or dopamine affects how happy or sad you feel. Anxiety is not uncommon for people who used to exercise. The brain signals the body to move but for people who don’t, this creates mood disorders instead.

Here’s a comprehensive list of diseases of a sedentary lifestyle:

  • Coronary Heart Disease
  • Diabetes
  • Hypertension
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Morbid Obesity
  • Cancer
  • Digestive Disorders
  • Skin Problems
  • Osteoporosis
  • Scoliosis
  • Slipped Disc (Spinal Herniation)
  • Asthma

There’s a lot more diseases involved with a sedentary lifestyle. This is why staying active is very important for longevity.

What is the Recommended amount and Duration for Cardio?

The recommended number of hours to do cardiovascular exercises per week is at least 6 hours or 1 hour of exercise a day. This can be done in any number of ways. During these times, you can’t risk yourself catching the coronavirus, so doing a general cleaning every week can give you a good 2 hours of cardio.

As with any other kind of activity, always consult your physician. This is more important if you have pre-existing conditions. 

Category: Featured