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Best Cardio Exercises

Cardiovascular fitness is important. Heart disease doesn’t just affect the heart but the vessels of the body as well. Peripheral vascular disease can lead painful joints and fluid retention in the tissues - even amputations. The best way to keep this from happening is to keep the body healthy.

If you are looking for cardio exercises, here are some of the best you can perform.

* Aerobics – Like the name says, it uses oxygen to improve your fitness level. As you get better, you will lower your heart rate and blood pressure while increasing your oxygenation throughout the tissues. That means less lactic acid build-up in the muscles, which causes cramps. But aerobics is a general name for several types of activities: kickboxing, dancing, step aerobics and more.

* Bicycling – This can be done outside or inside. Inside it is called spinning. This is a low-impact, high-energy workout that takes you up hills and down them again by adjusting the tension on your bike. Music keeps you moving even when your legs want to give out.

Outside, you can bike trails and even go mountain biking. To get the most out of your workout, choose the appropriate bike for the terrain. Wear light breathable clothing, a helmet and comfortable shoes.

* Swimming – Unfortunately swimming does more for men in the way of a weight-loss exercise than it does for women. It doesn’t heat your body up enough in the cold water to burn fat, but it does give you an excellent cardiovascular workout. We are not talking about doggie paddling here. Swimming freestyle, backstroke and butterfly laps all require power and good lung capacity. You will increase your ability to swim farther and faster the more you practice.

* Jogging – Jogging is a cross between running and walking fast. For those who have trouble with their knees and can’t stand the impact, you can get the same jogging workout on the elliptical trainer. It increases your heart rate, uses the arms and all without wear and tear on your joints.

* Walking – This is one of the best overall exercises. You can walk up hills, down hills, over rough terrain and on flat surfaces. Pumping your arms increases the involvement of your heart and lungs. Anyone can do it at any age. It strengthens your entire body and burns calories.

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