Cardiovascular fitness, simply put, means the ability of the body to give oxygen and blood flow to the muscular areas. Some people ask the question, “Can I improve cardiovascular fitness over 40?” The answer is, “Yes, you can!” Cardiovascular fitness over 40 can be achieved by hard work, perseverance, patience, and dedication.
To obtain an improved cardiovascular system one must increase their physical activity enough to get their heart pumping and to increase their respirations. This is not hard to do, but it is work, which many of us are not particularly keen on. This can be done through consistent effort at exercise.
People over the age of 40 are taking more of an interest in their health. This could be out of fear, for health reasons, or because they just want to look and feel better. Whatever the reason may be this is a very doable expectation. You must also be realistic, because as you age the amount of muscle mass you lose increases when you do not exercise. While it is definitely easier to keep it than to gain it – improving your cardiovascular fitness will improve your overall health.
Most people who attempt to increase their cardiac fitness are also looking to lose weight as well. If this is the case, you will need to increase your cardio by exercising approximately 3 to 5 times a week for 20 to 40 minutes at a time. You should start out slowly when first attempting this, beginning with the minimal requirement of 3 times a week for 20 minutes. This should gradually be increased, as you are able to tolerate, working up to 5 times a week for 40 minutes at a time.
If you are attempting to gain weight, which may be the rare case, you really do not need to attempt any cardiovascular fitness exercises. However, it will not affect your weight if you do just a mild workout of 20 minutes time at 2xs per week. And the exercise will help to improve the efficiency of your heart, strengthen your immune system and improve your balance.
If you neither want to lose or gain weight, but are just looking to maintain your weight and improve your cardio you can exercise for 20 to 40 minutes approximately three times a week. This should be sufficient.
Heart rate needs to be monitored for optimal cardiovascular fitness reasons. For maximum weight loss you would want to aim for a goal and include a high-intensity workout in your plan.
For even further success in your cardio fitness workout you may include weight training, but this should not be attempted until proficient in the basic cardio fitness regime. When this becomes easier to you then you can advance on to weight training.
As with any exercise regime you should always consult your primary care physician regarding any precautions or limitations that you should follow. Improving cardiovascular fitness over 40 is not only highly possibly, but definitely an achievable goal in your health plan.
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