How many times have you begun an intense exercise program only to stop at some point?
If you’re like most, that answer is in multiples.
Although it is possible for all of us to begin again at any time, that “lay-off” takes a toll on our body in numerous ways and one of those is our aerobic capacity.
Aerobic capacity according to Wikipedia is:
Aerobic capacity refers to the maximum amount of oxygen consumed by the body during intense exercises, in a given time frame. It is a function both of cardio-respiratory performance and the maximum ability to remove and use oxygen from circulating blood.
Heart health/aerobic capacity is mandatory for optimal overall health, however, heart disease continues to be one of the leading causes of death in today’s world.
Regular exercise is a heart healer. Your heart muscle is stronger and better equipped on a daily basis to keep pumping blood throughout the body when you exercise regularly. In fact, aerobic capacity has been accepted as the major component in the physical capacity of athletes (mandatory to their success and achievement of course). Unfortunately, one of the biggest declines you’ll notice when laying off or neglecting your exercise program is your aerobic capacity.
When you are not exercising, your stroke volume (which is how much blood the heart is able to pump throughout the body with one heartbeat) will decline by up to 50 percent. Not only that, but your resting heart rate will increase, your cardiac output decreases, and your overall VO2 max, which is the amount of oxygen you are able to utilize on a day to day basis, also declines.
For those that were previously fit, this can decrease by 1 percent per day off taken from exercising. Within a few short months, the level of fitness is back to baseline or untrained levels.
The longer you stay away from exercising, the lower your lactate threshold which is the measurement of how long you can continue to exercise at an intense pace before extreme levels of fatigue set in. When this begins dropping, you won’t last long on any form of exercise you do, and, soon, you’ll find it a struggle to do even moderate intensities of activity. Before long, even going up a fight of stairs will have you winded and puffing.
What does all this do beyond the initial set-back? It sets you up to stay unfit going into the future! Especially for those previously fit. The reality is, the longer you neglect exercising, the harder and harder it is to get back into shape when you finally make the decision to exercise again.
Healthy aerobic capacity equates to healthy endurance. Lack of aerobic exercise along with aging are primary players for low aerobic capacity (VO2max).
Previous studies prove that 3 weeks of continuous sedentary behavior produces the same reduction in aerobic fitness as 30 years of aging does!
It’s time to take command of your body and your life…
“Reclaim Your Longevity” can help you do just that…
For more tools and resources from Carolyn Hansen to assist you in attaining your health and fitness goals and achieving the success you desire in life, please visit: