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            There are many theories out there about aerobic or cardiovascular exercise breaking down the lean tissue in the body. Aerobic exercise (exercise w/oxygen) should be a vital part of your regular fitness program. You are not only burning calories but you are using the most important muscle in your body – the heart.

            As your heart is pumping blood throughout the body you are increasing the amount of oxygen and the size of the blood vessels in your body. These blood vessels supply oxygen to the tissues including your muscles. The oxygen also carries out waste products to help with recovery and growth of tissue.

            What type of cardiovascular activity is best for you and your goals? Running, jogging, and jumping rope are all examples of high impact aerobics and may tend to break down muscle tissue, burn more calories and with the presence of an improper nutrition program may lead to muscle loss. Walking and cycling at low to moderate intensity levels are examples of non-impact to low impact cardiovascular activities that will potentially minimize the breakdown of muscle tissue.

            Determining what your ultimate goals are, whether overall weight loss, body fat loss or gaining lean body mass, will help you determine what type of cardiovascular exercise is best for you to reach your goals. It is very important to choose a type of exercise you will enjoy and will not cause boredom. Cardiovascular exercise must be performed for no less than 20 minutes. A slow, steady and long duration program will achieve greater fat loss results when done on a consistent basis.

            One tip to achieving faster results is to complete your aerobic activity first thing in the morning prior to breakfast with plenty of water. Since your body has been burning calories during the nights sleep, body fat will be utilized as energy in the absence of glycogen in the blood stream.

            In conclusion, the muscle tissue in your body is vitally important for longevity and ultimate weight control. By incorporating a regular weight training and cardiovascular exercise program in your daily routine, you can add years to your life and life to your years.

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It is harder to walk uphill than downhill because you must lift your weight of your body and to do this requires greater energy than that needed for walking on the level.  To create this greater energy your muscles require to give extra lift, your heart has more work to do to feed the blood cells and remove their waste matter and your lungs have more work to do to remove the carbon dioxide from your heart and replenish it with oxygen.  That is why the steeper the climb and the more concentrated the effort, the more quickly you breathe.  If you are out of condition you start to “ pant” to gulp in extra oxygen,  in comparison to the energy necessary for walking on a horizontal lane, the total value of the extra energy needed for climbing is the weight of your body times the height you are to reach. 

            The steeper the incline of the hill, the quicker you use this extra energy.  It is therefore harder for you to walk up a steep hill than a gentle one, although the energy used up in either case, where the height to be reached is the same, is identical.

            When you walk downhill, very little energy is needed because the weight of your body carries you down the slope.  Of course, this is the pull of gravity that is helping you down, in the same way that you have to overcome the force of gravity when you walk up a steep hill.

 

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