There are so many ways to get that heart of yours pumping. 5 great ideas that you’re read before or below. They are great reminders of how easy it is to incorporate some movement and enjoyment into your life. But, your heart will pump that much better when you do things for others. Instead of going out to lunch, pack a small healthy lunch and volunteer for Meals on Wheels… providing boxed lunches to your community’s aging and homebound. I first encountered them while staying summers at my grandparents. It means the world to them, its a great way to check on them, and its very rewarding to the volunteers. My company is involved in the program. If yours isnt, perhaps you can start one… or join one in your community. All it requires is your time and car/fuel.
- Fido isn’t just good for your heart because his unconditional love. Fido is also asking you to get out and take a walk. If you love Fido put a leash on your pup and take a walk. Walking your dog and doing household chores can help keep you heart healthy? Anything that raises your heart rate and increases your breathing counts as aerobic exercise, which improves cardiovascular function and helps burn calories. You can burn approximately 100 calories per mile, so challenging yourself by increasing the pace and distance will increase the number of calories you burn. Best of all, you’re never too old or too young to go for a walk.Given that heart disease (which includes heart attack, stroke, and heart failure) is the number one cause of death—in the world—it makes absolute sense to take baby steps to manage your heart health. Healthy diet and intense exercise aside, these 6 activities are the best way to get started!
- Have you every thought that gardening is only for when you’re retired. Think again. Rheumatologist and 5-star doctor Dr. Thomas Namey says, “Gardening can be light to heavy physical activity, where caloric burn averages 400-500 kcal per hour.” Whether it’s a bit of weeding or casually watering the flowers, you’ll get your blood pumping. Plants also give off oxygen, so you’ll be inhaling fresh air. Dr. Charles Cattano, a gastroenterologist, says gardening can be wonderful for mind, body, and spirit for these reasons: it’s great for your hand function, helps burn calories (gardeners are more physically fit!), and it fights depression. Besides cultivating the earth, gardening is also a wonderful way to cultivate mindfulness. Clinical psychologist Dr. Susan Feingold says it has meditative qualities which provide relaxation.
- Dance! Simply put, Dr. James Goodpaster says any movement is better than no movement, so dancing definitely counts as exercise! Dr. Gerald Mandell, a specialist in Nuclear Medicine, notes that dancing is an excellent exercise for fitness. It requires a great deal of aerobic exercise, bringing your heart rate up quickly and keeping it up throughout the entire dance session. Because it affects your cardiovascular (heart) health, pediatrician Dr. Anthony La Barbera says it can aid with cognitive function and help keep your mind sharp.
- Play with your kids and grandkids. Playtime isn’t just for children. Join your kids in some fun, get in some bonding time, and burn some calories while you’re at it. If you’re outside, play tag, swing on the monkey bars, or do some more athletic sports. If you’re inside, play hide-and-seek or even some dancing video games. If it raises your heart rate, it counts as exercise! If you think you don’t have the energy, include music in your playtime, like musical chairs: Dr. Cory Annis, a specialist in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics, says, “Listening to fast music makes it easier to clean the house, mow the lawn, and do lots of things we think we don’t have energy for. Rhythm has a physical impact on us.”
- Clean the house. Speaking of cleaning house…cleaning can be a chore, but there are many ways to make it fun and heart-healthy! Orthopedic surgeon Dr. Mark Galland suggests keeping a brisk pace as you clean—sweeping, mopping, vacuuming, dusting, etc. He also recommends invest in a cuff weight that you can attach to your ankles and wrists to give a little bit of resistance as you do normal actions. Also, when moving from room to room, try to skip, jump, or lunge from point A to point B.