Is Physical Fitness Possible For Those With Hypertension?

June 21, 2014
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Most people have the misconception that those who have high blood pressure should not workout or engage in exercise; they couldn’t be more wrong. Exercising or working out regularly can, in fact, help in lowering blood pressure levels as well as alleviate stress, bolster the body with more energy, and provide the individual with a better overall feeling.

Physical Activities for a Hypertension-Afflicted Person

Physical-Activities-Hypertension-GymMembershipFeesHaving a condition of high blood pressure or hypertension doesn’t mean you shouldn’t exercise. In fact, your doctor could even help make modifications regarding workout routines which are safer in range and intensity for you.There are several types of physical activities which a person with hypertension can engage in; here are two of the easier ones:

Aerobic: this routine consists of at least half an hour to 45 minutes of activity thrice a week. If you’re unavailable for those 30 to 45 minutes, break a workout into 10 or 15 minutes of intervals. Some of these “interval” workouts may include jogging, swimming, cycling, stair climbing, and brisk walking.

Strength training: thrice a week of strength training at a gym, such as Life Time Fitness, causes your blood pressure to decrease. Lifting dumbbells, for instance, causes an increase in your blood pressure temporarily. Ensure that you use light loads and learn breathing control throughout your movements; stop immediately if you feel dizziness or lightheaded. Start off with one or two sets comprised of 10 to 12 repetitions for resistance machines to do chest presses, abdominal exercises, bicep curls, and leg presses

Take Precautions

Take-precautions-GymMembershipFeesHigh-intensity training or exercises are not advised for those afflicted with hypertension; workouts for hypertension sufferers should be at low to moderate pace. To test whether your workout is being conducted at the safest level: converse with other people at the gym when they use the gym equipment at the same time that you do and see if you don’t run of breath.

Monitor your heart rate with a device while exercising; the target is between 50% and 85% of your own heart rate maximum, which is 220 subtracted from your age. If you are on any kind of blood pressure medication, consult your physician regarding adjustments during exercise since medication may lower your heart rate target.

Engage in Other Activities to Lower Blood Pressure

Engage-in-Other-Activities-GymMebershipFeesAdditional “exercises” such as physical activities which are not done in a gym may be done daily. Walking your dog, biking to school or work, parking a considerable distance from building entrances to force yourself to walk from your car to the main door or gate, walking during work breaks, and taking the stairs rather than elevators are all daily activities which could help lower your blood pressure if you make them as habits.

Some hypertension sufferers find brisk walking for 30 to 45 minutes daily everyday is enough to keep off their medications for a considerable length of time; brisk walking can lower blood pressure between 5% and 15%. If you’re determined to go on a workout or training program, however, consult with your doctor first to find out what kind of workout and how intensive it may be before you start going to a gym like 24 Hour Fitness. Starting with 5 to 10 minutes on a treadmill, for instance, may sound like no big deal to you but it is a “sure and steady” way of engaging into longer, cardiovascular system-beneficial exercises.

Pacing To Avoid Any Injuries

Gardening, yoga or other activities which can be done at moderate paces should be your “filler” workouts in between gym sessions. Since you will already be increasing the duration and intensity of your workouts, there is no need to drive yourself harder when you aren’t at the gym.

Mini workouts are also advisable; ten minutes of calisthenics, for instance, done thrice during the day – waiting for the bathtub to fill up, watching a TV show or while doing the laundry – can equal half an hour of daily exercise already which you might not even be aware of.

Replacing Gym Workouts Once a Week

Replacing-Gym-Workouts-GymMembershipFeesFinding activities which you regularly enjoy can replace gym workouts at least once a week. Dance, hike, do Pilates, and the like to get your heart beat faster. Choosing an activity that is convenient to engage in makes your commitment to it easier, too.

You just have to select a time which will enable you to “workout” outside of the gym; times such as your children’s soccer practice, lunch break or after work. You can also get DVDs or workout applications to watch and follow, yoga mats or handheld light weights which you can use while watching a movie at home.

The DASH Diet and Restricted Sodium Intake: Going Beyond Exercise

Switching to a DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet can improve your systolic blood number (systolic is that top number on the gauge). Based on consumption of 2,000 calories daily, this diet is low on cholesterol and saturated and total fats but high on fiber, protein, complex carbohydrates, and good fats.

Cutting back on the sodium is also another excellent way to maintain your blood pressure at optimal level. Avoid exceeding the recommended 2,300mg of sodium daily, the equivalent of one teaspoon of the common table salt; depending on age and other factors, the sodium limit could be 1,500 for some. Restricting your sodium intake to a minimum can help your systolic blood pressure drop between two and eight points.

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