Weights for Heart Health

Sharon Rekieta, Fitness Director - 22nd February 2013

Most people realize that activities that get your heart pumping such as walking, running, biking, swimming, etc., are good for heart health. However, according to recent research, pumping iron also benefits the heart and offers protection from cardiovascular disease.

During cardio exercise, our efforts call upon the heart to fill with blood and pump it out to the working muscles. As a result, our hearts become stronger and more efficient.

During weight/resistance training, the heart muscle tissue contracts more forcefully to push the blood out. And just like the effect on other muscles in our body, this physical stress causes tiny tears in the heart muscle. When the body repairs those tiny tears during recovery, the heart becomes much stronger and increases its blood pumping efficiency.

In addition, after you engage in weight training, your blood pressure stays lower than it would after a cardio session! And, the cumulative effect makes your heart and body healthier.

Bottom line: do some type of cardio activity five to six days a week and some type of weight/resistance training a couple of times a week so your heart will receive all of the perks of exercise.