Some things we need to know about aerobics
AEROBICS STRENGTHENS THE HEART and lungs and builds endurance. For those who wish to reduce weight, aerobics is also a ‘must-try’.
Though some suggest that we need to do aerobics for a minimum of 30 minutes at least three times a week, some experts say that 20 minutes at least thrice a week would suffice.
Reader’s Digest: How to do Just About Anything (The Reader’s Digest Association, Inc., Pleasantville, New York, 1986) explains that aerobic means “occurring in the presence of oxygen.” Doing it “stimulate[s] more rapid and efficient transport of oxygen through the bloodstream. Oxygen is needed to burn the fuel (calories) that provides the energy for the exercise. In essence, the blood flow to the heart increases, requiring the heart to pump harder. Since the heart is a muscle, the harder it pumps, the stronger it becomes.”
The book adds, “Jogging and running are the most popular aerobics, but any activity that is rhythmic and sustained and uses the body’s large muscle qualifies. This includes walking, swimming, cross-country skiing, jumping rope, climbing stairs, bicycling, and even vigorous dancing.”
The reference also enlightens us that “the object of all aerobics is to increase your heart rate to what is called a training level and to maintain that level for at least 20 minutes. Your training level depends on your age. The maximum human heart rate is 220 beats per minute, but the rate declines by one beat for each year of life. The maximum heart rate for a 20-year old, therefore, is 200 beats; for a 40-year old, 180 beats.”
Moreover, it elucidates that our training level “is between 70 and 85 percent of [our] maximum heart rate. For a 20-year-old, this would be between 140 and 170 beats per minute; for a 40-year-old, between 126 and 153.”
In determining whether our heart rate has reached training level, the book furthermore teaches us, “take your pulse for 10 seconds immediately after exercising hard for several minutes. Then multiply by 6. Work up gradually to your training level. Anyone over 35 should check with a doctor before embarking on an exercise program.”
Just a final piece of advice: While doing aerobics, never forget to drink a lot of water every now and then, especially nowadays that temperature is extremely high more than ever. Happy exercising!
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