Health & Medical sports & Exercise

Are You a Cardio Junkie?

Many people think that 'cardio' activity such as walking, jogging, cycling, swimming or cardio gym equipment is the best way to get in shape and lose body fat.
They start off with these low intensity activities and quickly become hooked on the 'feel good' chemicals.
So they start spending more and more time doing them but without ever achieving the strong, lean and healthy body they really wanted when they first got started.
Although we have been doing this type of activity now for the best part of 30 - 40 years new research shows that it is not as beneficial for our health as it was once believed.
And the reason this is the fact that long stretches of low to medium intensity activity makes for a downsizing of the cardiovascular system.
This makes muscles, hearts and lungs smaller and more efficient which is not really a recommended for long term health and wellness.
After 40 odd years of the huge popularity of aerobic type activity we now have scientific evidence that it is not as good for us as it was once believed.
And here is why: when you perform cardio activities for long periods at a low to medium intensity, it makes for smaller muscles, smaller hearts and smaller lungs which are not a recipe for good health.
Cardio activity does not correct the number one fitness problem in our modern world - the loss of muscle tissue at the rate of around one half pound per year after the mid 20's.
There is only one type of exercise that can address and reverse this and that is strength training exercise.
Rebuilding and maintaining our muscle tissue has become crucial in our inactive and sedentary world.
This loss of muscle tissue is so vital it is linked to a general weakening of the entire body and its systems exposing people to at least 50 diseases and illnesses.
The modern approach to proper exercise is a focus on what happens after an exercise session is over as opposed to what just happens during it.
Cardio type activities only burn fuel (calories) during the session and do little to nothing to increase the metabolism (the body's engine).
As muscle tissue is what drives the metabolism it make sense that working our major muscle groups through their full range of movement against resistance is what is needed to increase our metabolic rate to ensure the burning of fat as opposed to the storing of fat.
For decades we have believed misleading information about how we should exercise.
We have been told everything from walking to gardening to bird watching counts as proper exercise.
If only it were this easy and we could stay strong and healthy without hardly lifting a finger.
The sad thing is people now believe these myths that they just find something 'fun' or 'easy' and they are being denied the multitude of health benefits that a proper exercise program could deliver to them.
Strength training exercise will do the opposite of cardio type activity, it will build a strong body with a strong heart and lung system, a healthy strong metabolism firing on all cylinders to burn up excess fuel (calories) and a strong immune system to reduce the risk of life threatening diseases.
You can still do the recreational activities you enjoy as part of living an active lifestyle.
Just don't do them instead of or try and replace proper muscle building and toning exercise with low intensity fluff as you will be very disappointed with the results.

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