3.02 Aerobic Exercise and Heart Health

Aerobic ExerciseAerobic exercise, also known as “cardio”, is any exercise that elevates your heart rate and your breathing rate for a prolonged period of time. The word “aerobic” literally means “requiring oxygen”. It takes time for you to breath in oxygen and circulate it, thus aerobic exercise are low to moderate intensity. If you were to run as fast as you can (sprinting) or lift weights (requires intense energy in a short time), your body does not have time to replenish oxygen and thus these exercise are consider “anaerobic” which literally means “without oxygen.”

Examples of aerobic exercise include:

  • Walking, jogging or running (not sprinting)
  • Biking
  • Swimming
  • Aerobics
  • Dancing
  • Certain aspects of sports like basketball or soccer

Out of all types of exercise, aerobic exercises have been the most strongly linked to reducing the risk of heart disease.

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