Nearly three-quarters of Americans are either overweight or obese. The majority of people in this category fall under the parameters of obesity.
However, with ample amounts of overly-processed, high-calorie foods available to us around every corner, it’s hardly our fault. Paired with common sedentary lifestyles, it’s no wonder people struggle with their health.
Fortunately, there’s something you can do to take back control. By eating right and starting an exercise program, you can start shedding weight in no time.
For some extra motivation, keep reading for the top 12 benefits of cardio exercise and weight loss.
1. A Healthier Heart
There are endless types of cardio, from jogging on a treadmill to swimming laps in a pool. No matter what type of cardio you’re doing, however, it will lead to a healthier heart.
Your heart is like any other muscle. The more you work it, the stronger it will get.
Furthermore, when you use cardio for weight loss, it reduces your total body fat percentage. This makes you less likely to have heart complications, like heart attacks, strokes, high blood pressure, and so on. As these complications can often be fatal, a healthier heart is one of the best heart benefits of cardio.
2. Stronger Lungs
Just like your heart, your lungs will also benefit from doing cardio exercise. The more you challenge your lungs by breathing hard and working out, the more efficient and powerful they’ll become.
After a few weeks of doing cardio, people often notice they no longer breathe hard while going upstairs, playing with the kids, or walking the dog.
3. More Energy
Cardiovascular exercise is phenomenal for increasing your daily energy. Sedentary lifestyles often leave us feeling lazy, tired, and super low-energy, even after a day of sitting around.
One of the most amazing benefits of cardio exercise is that it increases your body’s mitochondria production. Mitochondria are essential for producing energy. The more you use energy, the more mitochondria your body creates to adapt to your new lifestyle.
4. Better Sleep
Interestingly, though doing cardio increases your energy throughout the day, it also helps you sleep during the night. By using your energy stores each day for physical activity, your body and mind won’t be as restless at night. When we’re sedentary, we often feel exhausted, yet are unable to sleep because we have too much stored energy.
5. Weight Loss
Doing cardio for weight loss is one of the most common reasons people start exercising. The name of the game is burning more calories than you consume. It’s much easier to put your body in a calorie deficit by exercising to burn hundreds of extra calories per day.
This is important for people who have a high body mass index. Your BMI is how much you should weigh based on your height and age.
Though, this figure does not account for lean muscle mass. As such, people who have a lot of muscle (like bodybuilders) are often categorized as overweight or obese, even though they have very little body fat.
6. Increased Metabolism
One of the best benefits of cardio is that it can help repair a slow metabolism. Working out can increase your lean muscle mass, which creates a high demand for calories to maintain your body weight. As such, your metabolism works harder and more efficiently, making it easier to lose weight and burn fat.
If you have a slow metabolism, it could be from hardcore dieting, illnesses, and other underlying issues. Check with your doctor if you feel like your metabolism isn’t working efficiently. It could be anything from having too little lean muscle mass to thyroid conditions.
7. More Lean Muscle Mass
As noted above, certain types of cardio exercise (primarily those that involve resistance training), will result in more lean muscle mass on your body. The more lean muscle mass you have, the more efficient your metabolism will be.
Furthermore, if you’re looking into the benefits of cardio for weight loss, lean muscle mass will give you a toned aesthetic.
8. Improved Moods
Working out with cardiovascular exercise releases endorphins in the body. Endorphins are the feel-good hormones that help keep our moods balanced.
Cardio workouts have been shown to decrease the symptoms of anxiety and depression. Endorphins are also good for reducing pain and inflammation in the body.
9. More Flexibility and Mobility
One thing most people struggle with as they get older is joint pain and flexibility issues. The less active we are, the more problems we’ll have getting around as we get older.
One of the benefits of cardio is that it keeps our bodies younger and more mobile, now and in the future. The best way to keep yourself independent as you age is by establishing a healthy workout routine now.
10. Better Self-Esteem and Confidence
When it comes to being overweight or obese, we cant start to feel insecure. We are always afraid of what others are thinking, how we look, and whether or not people (even our friends) are judging us.
One of the best benefits of cardio for weight loss is that it comes with a renewed sense of self-esteem. This is why the ChiroThin Weight Loss Program exists – to help people who have struggled with their weight regain their health and their confidence.
11. Improved Discipline and Self-Control
One thing most people struggle with, particularly when it comes to food, is self-control. As noted above, we have so many unhealthy (but delicious) foods available to us all the time. It’s exceedingly difficult to say no sometimes.
When we start working out, we find more purpose and motivation to start taking better care of ourselves. One of the surprising benefits of cardio is that you’ll find it easier to be more disciplined with your diet.
12. A Longer, Happier Life
Finally, cardio exercise can lead to a better life. The more in-shape you get, the more opportunities you’ll have.
For example, you’ll be more confident with relationships. You may also gain the ability to go on hiking adventurers with friends, where you might have avoided them in the past.
Being fit and healthy will also lead to a longer life. You’ll be less susceptible to things like heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and other illnesses that can be confining or fatal.
Ready to Experience the Benefits of Cardio and Weight Loss?
As you can see, there are countless benefits of cardio. You’ll feel better physically, mentally, and emotionally. We know it can be hard to get started, but we highly recommend implementing a cardio program as soon as possible.
Are you ready to get started on the path to a healthier you? Click here to find a ChiroThin doctor in your area. Our goal is to help everyday people experience the joys of living a healthier life.