Best workouts for a happy, healthy heart

Taking to the pedals could reduce your risk of heart disease. Taking to the pedals could reduce your risk of heart disease.

WHEN it comes to improving your heart’s health, exercise is as key as eating the right kind of foods.

You don’t have to be doing a large amount of activity to start noticing the changes - in fact it is better to start small and increase the number of workouts you do week on week.

If you want to get your heart’s health up to scratch, these workouts are an excellent way to get the blood pumping:

Weight training: This form of exercise is widely recommended to anyone with heart disease. As well as helping to build muscle mass and burn fat, it also benefits your bone and heart health.

The key to this kind of training is progression; starting with small weights then gradually moving onto heavier ones will ensure you don’t get stuck in a fitness rut.

Swimming: Your heart (and lungs!) will love you for taking a regular dip in the local pool.

Variation is key to swimming - aim to do between eight to 12 lengths in different strokes each time, and change it up on other days.

Pilates: A study published in the International Journal of Cardiology revealed that doing Pilates regularly is actually great for reducing blood pressure. It also increases flexibility, improves hand strength and puts minimal pressure on muscle and joints.

Cycling: According to research carried out by the British Medical Association, taking the bike out on a regular basis could actually reduce your risk of coronary heart disease.

Apparently cycling 32 kilometres a week reduces the chances of developing the disease by an incredible 50 per cent. To start seeing a difference, aim to do one of these exercises for 30 minutes, three times a week.


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