Healthy heart habits

In honor of Valentine’s Day, we wanted to share tips for taking care of your cardio health. Health isn’t just about what you eat or what exercises you’re working on; it’s about your lifestyle. Here’s our top suggestions for a healthy heart:

 

Manage your stress

In today’s society, we brag about how busy we are—how much we have to do, how little sleep we get, even our level of stress. Researchers from the Massachusetts General Hospital found a link between the brain’s stress center and arterial inflammation which contributes to heart attacks and strokes. Mark Sisson, American fitness author, wrote, "work-related stress, which often goes hand in hand with financial stress, can increases a person’s risk of a first coronary heart disease event.” So take care of your heart and find ways to relieve stress. Meditate, try journaling, spend time with your friends, listen to music, and put in a serious effort to get a full night’s sleep.

Have a cup of coffee

Coffee (no cream or sugar) can help reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, and even type 2 diabetes.  Coffee has thousands of bioactive components like vitamins, minerals, and polyphenols (anti-inflammatory compounds).  Moderate coffee consumption (1-3 cups a day) can result in long term heart health benefits. So drink up!

Check out an infrared sauna

Clearlight saunas have incredible cardiovascular benefits. A study of over 2,000 participants found that people who used a sauna 4-7 times a week were 63% less likely to experience sudden cardiac death, reports Medical News Today. Saunas can help lower blood pressure and    have a positive impact on blood vessels as well. If you’re interested in adding a sauna session after your workout routine, check out M43 Fitness. You can read more about the infrared saunas we use and all the other benefits they provide here!

Cardio

Intervals are a solid way to get a serious workout in when you’re on a time crunch. Periods of high-intensity exercise followed by periods of rest or light activity can help boost cardiovascular fitness and enhance cardiac rehabilitation. Intervals can also contribute to decreasing risk of heart disease and high blood pressure. If you’re interested in adding intervals to your workout, try an Airdyne (fan bike). You don’t have to worry about focusing on your form, just on working hard. If you don’t have access to equipment, sprints are always an attainable option. Try sprinting for 30 seconds followed by 30 seconds of rest. And if you’re interested in getting your hands on some equipment to take your workout to the next level, check out M43 Fitness. Our facility has sleds, battle ropes, true form treadmills, and MyZone Heart Rate Monitors to push you to be the best version of your self.