Exercising your way to lower blood pressure is great for heart health! But What Is The Best Exercise For High Blood Pressure?
Clearly, Aerobic exercises are the best! Aerobic activity, sometimes referred to as cardio, done for 30-60 minutes most days of the week improves heart and blood pressure.
Aerobic Exercises For High Blood Pressure
- Cycling, either outdoors or on stationary bikes or home elliptical machines
- Brisk walking
- Mowing the lawn
Why Aerobic Exercises Are Best For Cardio
Being able to sustain increased heart and breathing rates for extended periods of time (30-60 minutes) is the key to the benefits of aerobics. When you’re doing aerobic exercises, you’re increasing your heart rate, pumping a lot of highly oxygenated blood to the muscles you’re working, and widening blood vessels.
Aerobic exercises use repetitive and rhythmic movements that depend on larger muscles and more oxygen. Using your legs, arms and shoulders pump a lot of oxygen-rich blood through your system at a fast rate. This extra force of your heart pumping at higher rates naturally strengthens your heart muscle, arteries, and blood vessels.
Is It Safe To Exercise With High Blood Pressure?
There is a definite link between inactivity and elevated BP and there’s a definite link between elevated bp and heart disease. So most any cardio activity you can add to your lifestyle is great for controlling blood pressure.
The safest way to get your cardio exercise is with home cardio workout equipment. With as little as 30 minutes a day in your own home, you can improve your health, blood pressure, cholesterol levels, energy levels and more.
The truth is that you’re going to be a lot safer with more exercise!
Your blood pressure should increase during the actual cardio exercise time, but start returning to normal when you stop. The more fit your heart and circulatory system, the faster it and your heart rate will return to normal.
Most people on medication, or dealing with blood pressures between 90/60 and 140/90 should be quite safe with increasing their physical activity. If your pressure is extremely high and/or you’re not on medication — see your doctor before you start any exercise program.
Does exercise lower blood pressure immediately?
Not likely! If you want to see an immediate reduction, try this:
- Drink a lot of water
- Stop everything with caffeine, sugar, and alcohol
- Eat Plenty of fresh and raw fruits and vegetables
- Avoid salt, especially in pre-packaged and processed foods
The truth is that eating a healthy diet even play a bigger part in high blood pressure than physical activity! But either without the other reaps only part of the results you need.
You can’t really expect a healthy body and circulatory system when you aren’t putting the food in it, can you? Your best bet is lifestyle changes that include eating a healthy diet, along with exercise.
How Much Exercise Do You Need?
If you find yourself on the couch or sitting in an office chair all day, just getting up and moving around is helpful. But when it comes to cardio exercise — a minimum of 30 minutes most days of the week.
The point of exercise to reduce your blood pressure has a lot to do with getting your heart rate up and keeping there for a few minutes.
So the time to schedule should be from 30 to 60 minutes a day at least 4 – 5 days a week. Even though I read that you can break the time up into different sessions, the best results come from at least 30 minutes at the time.
How Often Do I Need To Exercise For Hypertension?
While anything beats nothing, most days of the week will be the best practice for a hypertension exercise program. It’s important to mention that if you’re accustomed to a sedentary lifestyle, start out with less time and fewer days. That is if you want to avoid sore muscles and no energy the next day.
If you are used to being inactive, I would suggest starting out by scheduling short and easy walks of 30 minutes or less, to start with. Even if you’re planning to move to more aggressive walking, jogging or running, cycling or swimming: comfortable paced walking for a week or so will help you regain strength and flexibility.
Ways to Have More Physical Activity In Your Life
If you’re not into gyms or starting anything remotely resembling an “exercise program, I’ve got good news for you!
Just try getting more active in your daily life and a heart healthy diet and you could see real results. Most people today live a pretty inactive life, so you probably have several places to add more body motion to your day.
Here are some ways to get physically active and improve your health:
- Go for a walk during your lunch break
- Get off the bus earlier, and walk farther
- Ditch the elevator and climb the stairs
- Try riding a bicycle or walking some places that you’ve been using the car
- Take the dog for long walks
- Mow the lawn yourself
To tell you the truth, unless you’re already exercising on a regular schedule, I doubt there’s a best exercise. Just getting a mindset of living a healthy lifestyle that includes a lot of physical activity is going to take you in the right direction.
How To Make Room For Exercise In My Day?
Every individual needs to do something that makes you breathe harder, and get warmer for 1/2 hour at least 5 days a week. This doesn’t need to be extreme, but does need to be exercise: and what you do at work generally doesn’t count.
If you’re like most people, including regular time into your day to exercise is difficult at first. For myself, staying determined to improve my health for a couple of months with planned activity each day — built a habit. And habits are difficult to break.
Starting slow and enjoying your new lifestyle.
By starting out with 15 or 20 minutes a day, you will start building strength, determination, and actually experiencing improvements. If you’re having a difficult time sticking to a routine, try inviting someone to join in your activities with you. There’s plenty of advantages to exercising alone and with company.
It’s going to be a lot harder to keep up with your program if it’s drudgery and punishment, so, by all means, find something you enjoy. Sometimes I may stop walking or running, and after a few days, it’s easy to see how much better I felt when I was exercising. It won’t be long before you will see the benefits of your own labors.
Benefits of Cardio Exercise
When you join a healthy diet, lifestyle and cardio exercise like walking, cycling, running, jogging you increase your heart rate for short periods of time. That exercise aides in strengthening your entire cardiovascular system. Here are a few benefits of doing cardio:
1. Keep A Healthy Heart
Your heart is a muscle the same as the calf of your leg or your bicep? That’s right, your heart is a muscle and like any other muscle — work and exercise keeps it healthy. Exercising your heart means getting your heart rate up and holding it there for a sustained period of time.
When you elevate your heart rate with exercise you keep it strong and healthy, decreasing your risk of heart disease. According to the American Heart Association, you need at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic exercise, or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise to improve cardiovascular health.
2. Boost Immunity
- Physical exercise can help you flush out bacteria from your lungs and airways. By flushing out the harmful bacteria from your lungs you naturally reduce your chances for colds, flu, and many other common illnesses.
- White blood cells are your body’s immune system, and physical activity gets them circulating more rapidly. That means they’re on the job to detect illness quickly.
- While you’re doing cardio or aerobic exercises, your body temperature elevates, and this helps fight off infections.
- Stress is known as the silent killer, and physical activity slows down the release of stress hormones.
3. Improved Circulation
You promote cell growth and organ function by increasing the blood flow throughout your body. Cardio causes your heart to pump faster and full force. Cardio exercise on a regular schedule makes your heart strong and lowers your resting heart rate when you’re relaxing.
Aerobic exercises improve blood circulation and blood pressure flows more evenly and smoothly and can help in reducing your blood pressure and hypertension.
Monitoring Your Blood Pressure At Home
Because your bp fluctuates so much during the day, it’s not realistic to depend totally on the readings from the doctors’ office. Besides your body movement, or lack thereof, and diet many people deal with “white coat syndrome”. Whitecoat syndrome is real and simply means that your readings go above normal in the presence of doctors and nurses.
Monitoring pressure at home creates an accurate picture of your blood pressure during daily life and allows you to see if your lifestyle changes and/or medications are helping. Having your own monitor could make you feel more in control of your own health, or have opposite effects.
Some people find that home monitoring increases their anxiety and may even start obsessing and checking the readings too often. If you think you will fit that category, don’t bother with it.
Any physical activity that you can add to your life can help lower blood pressure. The benefits of aerobic exercise along with a healthy diet are substantial for your entire cardiovascular system and general health and worth your time and effort.