The heart is a muscle and, like all others, it needs to be developed. How? Through physical activity! It's important to know how to train it in order to keep it healthy. Regular physical activity is essential for protecting the heart.
The heart: our motor
The heart is vital. This organ acts as a pump in our bodies. By itself, it propels the blood our body needs to live through the arteries. It contracts and beats more than 100 000 times a day. Thanks to the heart, our bodies are refilled with oxygen. The muscles and brain couldn't function properly without it. Its fitness is therefore down to having a healthy body!
A fit heart: forget inactivity
A sedentary lifestyle and a healthy heart do not go hand in hand. A lack of physical activity increases the risk of triggering heart disease. With age, the risks increase. Other aggravating factors also come into play: smoking, diabetes, cholesterol and high blood pressure put your health in danger and can lead to a heart attack. This is why it's essential to encourage this organ to function correctly for as long as possible.
Doing a sport
The benefits of sport for the heart are quickly visible: in just a few months (2 or 3) you will reap the rewards of your regular training. With more muscle, the heart no longer has to exert the same amount of effort: at rest, the pulse is lowered by 15 to 20% compared with when you started training. A reason to get back in shape: a healthy mind in a healthy body!
Get going gently
Strengthening your heart should be done gradually. If you are just taking up a sport, don't try to do too much. Avoid sports that place a very high demand on the heart. Instead, choose sports that focus on endurance to begin gently (walking, cycling, jogging, swimming). If you get out of breath during exercise, it probably means your heart isn't sufficiently trained and / or you're working above and beyond your abilities. You should therefore train at a level where you are able to breathe easily, and be patient for progress.
Choose cardio training
Cardio training is perfect for increasing the muscle in your heart and improving your breathing. It brings together endurance activities that you can practise in the gym or at home. Its fitness equipment includes: the exercise bike, the bike ergometer, the cross trainer, the treadmill, the rowing machine, the stepper, the mini trampoline.
Fitness exercises carried out in this way are designed to strengthen the cardiovascular system and your cardiorespiratory abilities and considerably reduce the risk of heart disease. Cardio training, when done regularly, actively participates in expending energy, helping to burn off those extra pounds and eliminate any stress.
What you need to know
As it is often difficult to know what state your heart is in, it's essential to seek a doctor's opinion before starting a sport.
Above the age of 40, it is recommended that you consult a specialist for an exercise test to evaluate your heart capacity. During your cardio training activities, you can use a heart rate monitor to measure your pulse. It will help you achieve three objectives: monitor and improve your heart rate, lose weight, and optimise your training sessions. In this way you can keep an eye on your heart.