When you engage in physical activity the cardiovascular system is affected immensely. The pumping muscles within your heart, the muscles of your skeletal structure, your blood vessels and red blood cells all grow in size or number when you perform regular exercise. It is through this steady changing process that your body will begin to transport more blood, oxygen and nutrients and also increase its ability to remove waste from it. Keeping your cardiovascular system healthy through exercise will assist in preventing serious health conditions such as heart attack and stroke.
The Function of the Cardiovascular System
The cardiovascular system, also known as the circulatory system, includes the heart and blood vessels and operates as the transportation system of your body. Within the cardiovascular system your heart works to pump blood through an immense structure of blood vessels, blood is also delivered to every part of your body, it sends oxygen, distributes nutrients, gathers waste materials and battles germs.
Any disease that involves the heart or blood vessels is considered heart disease. According to the American Heart Association, almost 80 million people in the United States have some form of cardiovascular disease. It claims the lives of more than 2.4 million Americans each year--meaning every 34 seconds, someone dies from cardiovascular disease. Your heart is a mighty unit that beats to keep your body working. Your heart functions like a pump and sends blood to your organs, tissues and cells throughout your body. When it comes down to it the condition of your heart depends mainly on your lifestyle choice.
Your Lungs and Oxygen Capacity
When you perform regular physical activity your lungs will progressively grow stronger. As your endurance increases through exercise, your body begins to transfer larger quantities of oxygen to your muscles. For this to be accomplished, the type of exercise you engage in must involve the use of your large muscle groups such as the muscles in your legs, and the main key is for it to be sustained. When your body is in better physical shape, you will have necessary energy and endurance to provide you with the ability to fulfill desired tasks.
Exercise for Preventing Cardiovascular Health Problems
Studies have shown that to attain a healthy, strong heart you must engage in regular aerobic exercise at least three days a week, each session lasting a minimum of 30 minutes. There are a variety of aerobic exercises you can perform such as walking, jogging, swimming, cycling and hiking. By choosing an activity you enjoy you will be more likely to exercise daily.
- Utah Education Network: Circulatory System
- Texas Heart Institute: How Does Exercise Affect the Cardiovascular System?
- "Fitness: The Complete Guide"; Frederick C. Hatfield, MSS, Ph.D.; 2007