Benefits of Cardio

Remember in school when we used to do a cross-country race where we would run laps around the school property? You did this too right?

And everyone finished the race totally gassed and laying on the hill at the end of the playground because we all ran way too fast, and didn’t pace themselves like the gym teacher told us to? 😆

Did you have any idea why you were running those laps? I sure didn’t!

Yes, I knew exercise was important – but only in the last few years have I learned how truly important cardiorespiratory health is!

👉 It lowers heart disease, hypertension and stroke risk

👉 Strengthens your heart, blood vessels and lungs

👉 Strengthens your immune system

👉 Improves the performance of daily activities

👉 Helps manage weight and reduces risk of obesity related diseases

👉 Reduces stress, anxiety and symptoms of depression.

👉 Reduces fatigue and improves energy levels

👉 Helps improve self-esteem

👉 Improves cognitive function and brain health

👉 Improves sleep

👉 Increases lifespan

👉 Strengthen muscles, tissues, bones

👉 Protection against some types of cancer

👉 Reduces all cause mortality

Did anyone tell me a single reason in school? Nope!

Sometimes “Because it’s good for you” is enough. 😄

But as we get older, and things get harder, life gets busier… we need better reasons!

So look at that list again (which isn’t exhaustive) and pick 2-3 that really stand out to you.

🔸If you struggle with daily activities like going up and down the stairs and getting winded – add some stationary biking or walking hills to your week for a month and see if it helps.

🔸If you struggle with sleep – add 45 minutes 3x per week of steady state aerobic activity, like swimming, biking, jogging, stair master, etc.

🔸If you have a history of diabetes in your family…

🔸If you are exhausted and getting sick all the time…

Side note: This is anecdotal but I’ve barely been sick since I’ve started running – and yes there is also scientific research to back that… Just not on me personally. 😆 But with 4 kids we have a lot of sickness regularly in our house – and I don’t seem to catch it! 🤧

No, I’m not saying that cardio is going to heal/fix all these things. But it certainly isn’t going to hurt.

Especially if you progress slow and steady over time.

2 years ago, I started with exactly 15 minutes of jogging 3x per week! I’m not embarrassed to share that because I think a lot of us think “If it’s not an hour, it’s not worth it.” But that was how I got myself kickstarted!

Something is better than nothing.

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