For National Women’s Health Week I want to focus on things you can do to prevent illness and stay healthy – or even reverse some health problems you already have. Today – the topic is cardiovascular exercise.
Cardiovascular exercise – also known as aerobic exercise – is important for heart health. It is exercise that uses your large muscles like your legs and makes your heart and lungs stronger and can help to lower your blood pressure and cholesterol levels
Walking, running, jogging, bicycling, jump-roping, and swimming are all examples of cardiovascular exercises you can do outside. If you want (or have to) exercise inside using a treadmill, stationary bicycles or elliptical trainer are some options.
To give your heart a good workout you need to make sure that you do your cardiovacular exercise with a certain amount of intensity, but you don’t want to overdo it. One way measure the amount of exertion while exercising is by monitoring your heart rate. Some people check their heart rate manually and some people use a heart rate monitor. I use a heart rate monitor while using a treadmill when I exercise.
At any rate research has shown that people who are in general more active throughout their life tend to be healthier and live longer. The Surgeon General recommends that people should get 30 minutes of activity most days of the week. And for most people that is around 10,000 steps.
The WOMAN Challenge (Women and girls Out Moving Across the Nation) is a program coordinated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office on Women’s Health. As I mentioned in previous posts the goal of the challenge is to walk 10,000 steps or exercise for 30 minutes each day. The Challenge is an 8 week thing that started on Mother’s Day.
I decided to take the challenge! Its only been 2 days so far though – and I have been away from home so I have not done so well yet! Monday, for example, I only did about 1800 steps. But then I spend part of the day in a car driving so I should be able to do better tomorrow!
The Challenge has virtual teams so people can encourage and support each other – if you want to join my team follow these instructions:
For more information about walking 10,000 steps a day here are a few good links I found:
How many steps do you walk each day?
Should You Walk 10,000 Steps Per Day for Weight Loss?
The 20% Boost Program: Fit Walking into Your Life – The realistic way to build up to 10,000 steps a day
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