By Cory Brusseau
Although there are new blood pressure treatments coming out ever day, exercise is still one of the best remedies around. Studies have shown that sedentary lifestyles tend to elevate blood pressure, while regular exercise can reduce it. A single workout can reduce blood pressure for an entire day, and regular exercise can keep the pressure down for the long run.
Hypertension or high blood pressure is often a precursor to heart disease and if left undetected or isn't properly controlled can lead to heart attack, kidney failure, stroke and death. Because it has few early symptoms, many people aren't aware they have it, leading to the statistic that one out of every two Americans die of heart disease. The risk generally increases with age due to the high fat-high cholesterol diets that most modern societies consume throughout their lives.
The good news is that the right kind of fitness program can make a big difference. A balanced fitness plan is always the best way to achieve the results you desire. Stretching, strength training, aerobic activity, and anaerobic activity all play a part in a total fitness plan. Regular physical activity makes your heart stronger. A stronger heart can pump more blood with less effort. If your heart can work less to pump, the force on your arteries decreases, lowering your blood pressure. Regular exercise is also a great way to maintain your proper bodyweight, another important way to control blood pressure. To keep your blood pressure low, you need to keep exercising. Depending on your condition, it can take from one to three months for regular exercise to have the desired effect you aim for. The benefits last only as long as you continue your fitness routine, so as long as you exercise on a regular basis, you will see marked benefits all your life.
If your blood pressure is already at normal levels, a good fitness plan will keep it from rising as you age. Remember to begin your fitness routine slowly. If your condition is bad, do not overwork yourself! Find an fitness plan that will allow you to go at your own pace. Remember to incorporate a good warm up and cool down plan. Build up the intensity of your workouts gradually. Yes, it is important to simply get out there and get moving. However, to achieve the maximum benefit from exercise, it is important to strive for a full, balanced, ongoing workout plan that grows in intensity.
Based on the mountains of evidence that now exists, there is one message for all couch potatoes out there: Get moving. Whether you are overweight or slim, have hypertension or normal blood pressure, engaging in regular exercise can help reduce, risk of heart attack, stroke, and premature death.