Regular Treadmill Exercising
The benefits of regular treadmill exercising is well known to medical circles. It is true that the same benefits can be achieved with jogging or walking outside, but how many people are actually able to exercise outside? For one reason or another it’s just too simple to find an excuse. A treadmill can let you run in your undies in front of the TV if you want.
But what are the benefits of treadmill exercising?
There is perhaps no better, low-impact exercise for getting heart healthy than brisk walking. So many studies have been do and there seems to be no doubt. Regular exercise on a treadmill or exercise bicycle will increase your HDL cholesterol levels. Recent data seem to imply that high levels of cardio protective HDL is actually more important than the potentially damaging “bad” LDL cholesterol. In other words, it seems that increasing the “good” HDL is more important than reducing the bad “LDL”.
Teamed with a low-fat healthy diet, regular aerobic exercise, such as walking, jogging, swimming, cycling or treadmill use, stationary exercise biking, elliptical training, etc. will not only get you on the road to heart health but will also help you shed unwanted pounds and get back to your target weight. Being overweight or obese is also a risk factor for heart disease and diabetes.
Also, while some aerobic activities can be risky during pregnancy, walking has many benefits. Hormonal changes caused by pregnancy can loosen ligaments. Walking helps to tone muscles and strengthen joints that support a growing baby.
Finally, if you are just looking to get in shape, walking or jogging on a treadmill improves muscle tone all over your body. Strengthened muscles means the heart can pump more oxygen-rich blood with each step you take. Moreover you’ll help get your blood pressure back to accepted levels.
Let’s summarize those benefits, because they are so important for your overall health:
treadmill exercising will increase cardio protective HDL cholesterol
reduce the risk of diabetes
reduces high blood pressure
treadmill exercise improves muscle tone and creates fitness
These are just some of the benefits you can look forward to with a well planned exercise program. The most important thing it “stick with it!”
Treadmill exercising is fun but how do you buy the right treadmill?
As with most pieces of exercise equipment, you should invest as much as you can afford to buy just what you need. However, before spending your money, you should take some steps to see whether a treadmill is for you or not.
Many gyms and health clubs will allow you to sign up month-by-month. This is a great way to see whether this kind of exercise is something you will be able to stick to. If you find it dull in a gym, you’ll probably find it more so at home.
If you are convinced a treadmill is for you you’ll notice that there are many models and price ranges. The lower range usually are man-powered treadmills wherein your efforts make the exercise mat roll. These models are lighter, as they have no electric motor, but they offer less options like speed regulation and incline/decline settings. More sophisticated models will automatically adjust the incline or decline to keep your heart rate within a preset target zone and let you know when you should change speed. Some also have custom programs and sophisticated computer graphics. Costs range from several hundred dollars to several thousand, as you can see treadmill exercise can be rather expensive, but “if” you use it, it will be money well spent.
Once you get your much wanted treadmill home, start out slow and keep with it. It is much more effective to use your machine 3-5 times a week for 20-50 minutes at a comfortable slow pace that to run a 3 minute mile once a month. The latter will probably give you a heart attack rather than get you heart healthy.
According to Elaine Ward, managing director of the North American Racewalking Foundation (NARWF), beginners should start slow and walk at a comfortable pace for 10 to 15 minutes. "Gradually increase your pace until you are breathing so hard you can't sing but can still carry on a conversation," she advises.
Slowly increase the number of minutes on the treadmill over time until you are walking briskly for 30 to 45 minutes. When you get to this level, Ward says, you can begin thinking about mileage and target heart rate.
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