Physical Activity and The Way It Improves Your Heart and Lungs

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Physical activity, in its simplest definition, is any kind of movement that hits your muscles while consuming energy more than what resting takes. Included in this definition are running, walking, swimming, dancing, yoga, and even gardening.

What puts typical physical activities apart from an exercise is that the latter is more planned and well-structured. Examples of exercise include playing on a sports team, taking an aerobics class, and lifting weights.

Physical activities and ultimately exercises are good for your body in general but they can be truly beneficial for your heart and lungs.

There are 4 major types of physical activities: aerobic, muscle-strengthening, bone-strengthening, and stretching.

Aerobic exercises target large muscles in your body such as those in your legs and arms. Doing jumping jacks, dancing, bicycling, walking, swimming, and running are all aerobic in nature.

Aerobic activities trigger your heart to beat a lot faster than usual and you will breathe much harder during this exercise. Targeting the two organs, heart and lungs, will help keep them healthy, strong, and perform better.

Digging in the garden, climbing stairs, lifting weights, sit up, and pushups are all muscle-strengthening activities. These activities generally improve your muscles’ endurance, power, and strength.

On the other hand, bone-strengthening activities target your bones specifically. Lifting weights, jumping rope, walking, and running is an example of these activities.

Both muscle and bone-strengthening activities can also turn into aerobic exercises provided that they also target your heart and lungs. Running is an example of an activity that encompasses all spectrums of exercise.

Stretching is intended to help you with improving flexibility and ensuring the capability of moving the joints. Stretching can be performed in many ways but generally, yoga exercises, side stretches, and toe-touching are the best examples.

If your goal is to make your heart and lungs perform better, aerobic exercises are the best. You can choose to do it in a variety of intensity levels.

The light intensity can be best displayed through the daily activities you perform without much effort. Moderate intensity will trigger your heart, lungs, and muscles to perform slightly harder than the previous level.

Moderate activities are either a 5 or 6 on a scale of 0-10 with a significant increase in both heart rate and breathing. You can talk but you can’t sing when performing this activity.

Vigorous-intensity will eventually drive your heart, lungs, and muscles to work significantly harder than the other two levels. Vigorous exercises are a 7 or 8 on a scale of 0-10.

You can’t utter a word without stopping for breath if you are doing a vigorous activity at the moment. By the end of the day, the level of intensity is a subjective matter.

You can think of an activity as physically taxing if your level of fitness is poor. As such, an activity can be moderate, light, or vigorous in its intensity depending on how healthy you are.

Pushing a grocery cart around a store can be tiring for you but it’s a piece of cake for others. Digging in the garden or hoeing the soil can make you lose your breath but others may do it without even breaking a sweat.

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