Aerobic exercise is essential for achieving or maintaining cardiovascular fitness. It gets your heart pumping, causes you to break a sweat and allows you to burn many calories within a short time period. Running, swimming, jumping rope and cycling are examples of aerobic activities. You can also get a good aerobic workout playing a variety of sports, including tennis, volleyball and soccer. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends doing a minimum of 150 minutes of aerobic exercise each week, and there are many benefits that you can receive by adhering to this recommendation.
Aerobics vs. Strength Training
Aerobics and strength training are necessary for total-body fitness, but each form of exercise has a different effect on the body. The purpose of strength training is to increase muscle strength, size and density. Pushups, lunges, situps and squats are examples of strength-training exercises. They are generally done for short time periods and may involve the use of weights or other resistance tools. Aerobic exercises are calorie-burning activities that increase your heart rate and keep it elevated for the duration of your workout. Aerobic exercises not only help you shed pounds, but they also have a variety of additional benefits. The most important benefit of aerobics is that it exercises the most important muscle in your body: your heart.
Your cardiovascular system consists of your heart, blood and blood vessels. As your heart pumps blood, your cardiovascular system helps to transport it to your brain, vital organs and throughout your body. Your heart must be strong for this action to take place, and the only way to strengthen your heart is through aerobic exercise. Aerobic activities increase your heart rate, causing your heart to pump harder and faster. This gives your heart a workout, which strengthens it and helps it to pump blood more efficiently.
Minimizing Disease Risks
Heart disease, coronary artery disease, vascular disease and stroke are types of cardiovascular diseases, and each of these ailments can develop due to lack of aerobic exercise. Aerobics also burns away visceral fat, the hidden belly fat that lies within your abdominal walls. This dangerous fat surrounds your heart and vital organs as it accumulates, causing them to function less efficiently and increasing your risk of many diseases. According to Harvard Health Publications, Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, gallbladder disease and some cancers can develop due to excess visceral fat. Because you cannot spot train your abdominal area, the only way to eliminate visceral fat naturally is with aerobic exercise.
Aerobics and Weight Control
Because of the amount of calories you can burn with aerobics, this form of exercise can help you to keep your weight under control. According to MayoClinic.com, a 160-pound person can burn more than 400 calories per hour stair climbing, swimming, rollerblading, hiking or playing singles tennis. Burning more calories than you consume is essential if you want to stay trim, and aerobic activities make it possible for you to burn lots of calories within a short time period. Doing aerobics regularly also increases stamina, so you'll be able to exercise for longer time periods and burn even more calories as your stamina builds.