While it is easy to say that you are a heart health conscious, it is not so easy to put in the required work to make your heart healthy. That is because your heart should ideally get thirty minutes of exercise five days a week. According to the CDC, more than fifteen percent of American adults get no exercise in their leisure time. That means fifteen percent of the American adult population is putting their heart health at risk. How can you tell that your heart is at risk? By noticing the following symptoms.
- Shortness of breath (dyspnea) when you exert yourself or when you lie down.
- Fatigue and weakness.
- Swelling (edema) in your legs, ankles and feet.
- Rapid or irregular heartbeat.
- Reduced ability to exercise.
- Persistent cough or wheezing with white or pink blood-tinged phlegm.
- Increased need to urinate at night.
“How can I strengthen my heart?”
The best way you can strengthen your heart is by doing Heart-pumping aerobic exercise for thirty minutes a day, five days a week. Bottom line, exercise provides health. So even just fifteen minutes of moderate exercise a day can provide you with health benefits and increase your longevity. Some exercises we recommend starting out with includes:
- Light yard work
- Hiking on flat ground
- Golfing (not using a cart)
- Bicycling at less than 10 mph
- Tennis (doubles)
- Downhill skiing
- Moderate Walking (about 3.5 mph)
How can I tell that I'm helping my heart?
The best way you can do that is by tracking your heart beats as you are exercising. Before you make any attempt at exercising, you should find out what your resting heart beat level is. To measure your heart rate, you need to check your pulse. You check your pulse by pressing two fingers between the bone and tendon over your radial artery on your rist, then start counting the beats (when you feel them) for fifteen seconds. Multiple that number by four and you now have your resting heart beat level!
When you start exercising, your heart beat should be increasing between fifty to eighty-five percent above your maximum heart rate based on your age. Use this chart to help make that determination.
|Find your age and target heart rate:||Average maximum heart rate, 100%:|
|20 years old — 100 to 170 beats /min.|
30 years old — 95 to 162 beats/min.
35 years old — 93 to 157 beats /min.
40 years old — 90 to 153 beats /min.
45 years old — 88 to 149 beats /min.
50 years old — 85 to 145 beats /min.
55 years old — 83 to 140 beats /min.
60 years old — 80 to 136 beats /min.
65 years old — 78 to 132 beats /min.
70 years old — 75 to 128 beats /min.
|200 beats beats/min.|
190 beats beats/min.
185 beats beats/min.
180 beats beats/min.
175 beats beats/min.
170 beats beats/min.
165 beats beats/min.
160 beats beats/min.
155 beats beats/min.
150 beats beats/min.
What are the health benefits?
You Burn Calories – this means you will start to loose weight! Being overweight can lead you towards several heart related complications.
Lowers Your Blood Pressure - Another major risk factor for heart disease is high blood pressure. On most days, 30 to 60 minutes of moderate aerobic activity can help decrease your blood pressure.
Lowers Your Cholesterol - You can lower your LDL (bad cholesterol) and lower your risk of heart disease.
Stress Release – Not only does exercising make you feel good, but the reduction in stress can lead you away from heart disease.