Cardiovascular endurance training tips and benefits, from the experts

If you told me in high school that I’d run it someday marathonI would call you crazy. I wanted To believe it, but his hearty endurance was amazing. A few miles is fast on treadmill device Felt sufficiently taxed. I’m deeply impressed with anyone who can run a distance (looking at you, cross-country athletes!).

I started running more consistently in college, going longer and longer distances. and me she did Cross the marathon finish line. So, what has changed?

Much. For example, the role of improved cardiovascular endurance has been shown. Cardiovascular endurance allows you to maintain a certain pace or workload without overburdening your heart, according to Stacy SimsPh.D., sports performance physiologist and member of women’s health Advisory Board. (Think: You start to be able to run at a certain pace for only a few minutes at a time, and after a few weeks you can go for multiple miles.)

Meet the expert: Stacy SimsPh.D., is an athletic performance physiologist, nutritionist, and member of Do you Advisory Board, author next stage.

Cardiovascular endurance is an important part of overall health, and it goes beyond the racetrack. In fact, you can think of it as the base of the fitness pyramid, according to Sims. And the strong cardiovascular endurance comes with a long list of potential benefits as well, from making everyday life a little easier to staving off disease.

fascinated by? I thought so. Here’s everything you need to know about cardiovascular endurance from the experts, including the best ways to build your capabilities, how to measure it, and what amazing benefits you’ll feel in and out of the gym.

What is cardiovascular tolerance?

First, you need to understand exactly what this term means. Your cardiovascular endurance (or your cardiorespiratory capacity) is what allows you to maintain a certain pace or workload without overburdening your heart. It mainly depends on how quickly you can get oxygen into your circulation, Sims explains.

To break it down further, consider what happens in the body when you exercise. Sims explains that when you start exercising, your heart rate increases so that you can get blood flowing far From the digestive system and non-essential organs and to me The right places, i.e. your muscles and skin (to release the heat your muscles produce). She adds that blood flow does some things to your muscles; It removes waste and provides the oxygen for which it is used aerobic energy creation.

Eventually, you get to a point where you have to stop and recover. But over time, you can maintain your pace for longer before that happens. why? One reason is that you’ve improved your cardiovascular endurance — your heart has gotten stronger, and your vascularity (more blood vessels) has improved, according to Sims. In other words, your heart can pump blood more efficiently, and that blood can get to where it needs to go more efficiently.

What are the benefits of cardiovascular endurance?

First, it’s worth repeating: Building your cardiovascular endurance helps with exercise (imagine yourself being able to do back-to-back peloton classes, run a full league game, or lead the group on a long hike). But this performance benefit is just the tip of the iceberg. Here are some other perks of cardiovascular endurance:

  • Better sleep. The more experienced you are, the better sleep patternsSims says. a study Published in 2010 assessing the association between sleep quality and cardiorespiratory fitness in adolescent girls. Those rated as “fit” were more likely to report better Zzz’s.
  • less disease. Higher cardiorespiratory fitness is also associated with a lower incidence of cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes, and heart failure, according to 2018 reconsidering. Plus, when you sleep better, Sims notes that it helps your immune system. In fact, according to an article by Mayo ClinicPeople who don’t get enough sleep are more likely to get sick after exposure to the virus. Therefore, a boosted immune system is an indirect benefit of having good cardiovascular fitness.
  • Upgrade your daily life. Finally, Sims notes that better cardiovascular fitness can help you with seemingly simple everyday tasks, like carrying heavy groceries, going up the stairs instead of the elevator, keeping up with your kids, and more.

    What exercises build cardiovascular endurance?

    Do you think running is the only way to cardio prowess? In fact, cross-country skiing and kayaking are the gold standards for building cardiovascular endurance, according to Sims. Running, cycling and swimming They are also good options.

    “The more muscles you are involved in in the movement, the more stress is placed on the body,” Sims explains. “So, the more blood it takes, the faster the endurance turn.” When rowing, for example, your body has to push blood into your upper body and lower body muscles, And the Cardiac muscles, she says.

    Exercise methods to boost cardiovascular endurance:

    • Cross country skiing
    • Rowing
    • Management
    • Cycling
    • swimming
    • High intensity interval training

      Attention: You don’t have to stick with long, slow sessions to see a boost. “There is a lot of research coming out on that [says] Short, sharp and intense work helps develop better cardiovascular health and stamina than [something] Like a 30-minute run,” Sims says.

      This content was imported from {embed-name}. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, on their website.

      For example, low volume HIIT It can lead to similar — or even greater — improvements in cardio and respiratory fitness and heart function (among other things) compared to high-intensity HIIT and moderate-intensity continuous training, per reconsidering Posted in 2021 in Journal of Physiology. High stress requires the body to adapt quickly, Sims says.

      Pro tip: It’s a great idea for beginners to work with a trainer to improve your cardiovascular endurance and learn how your body moves and how to refuel, Sims says. And people who tend to overdo it may also want an accountability professional and help them step back when necessary.

      Variation in running speed helps with training in reaching endurance goals as well. The Sims suggests slowing down your long-distance running so it’s fun – not difficult. Then, speed it up for a shorter track session or run a cadence faster than your race day goal. It trains your body to work more efficiently at a faster pace. “Then, when you get to the marathon pace, everything is so much easier,” she says.

      How do you measure cardiovascular endurance?

      There are a variety of different ways you can monitor your cardiovascular endurance at home. Sims recommends two DIY methods.

      Experiment with the time each month. This is an especially good alternative if you don’t have help from technology, Sims says. For example, you could run a 5K every month on the same terrain, recording your pace and your perceived rate of exertion. She explained that as your cardiovascular endurance improves, you’ll notice that your time goes down. Of course, your time can be affected by a variety of factors, so it’s not a perfect metric – but it will at least give you an idea of ​​where your endurance is going.

      Monitor your heart rate. You can also track a few different metrics, such as your resting heart rate (RHR) and heart rate variability (HRV), according to Sims. When cardiovascular endurance improves, resting heart rate decreases. on the other side, higher Heart rate variability can indicate higher levels of cardiovascular fitness and stress resilience, according to Harvard Health.

      Both are stats fitness watches Or health tracking apps can store for you. Or you can manually measure your pulse for your resting heart rate. (Simply put your finger on your pulse and use the timer first thing in the morning.) “I like watching the weekly or monthly trend,” Sims suggests. But remember: both RHR and HRV can be affected by where you are on your menstrual cycle, as you say. So, keep this limitation in mind if you’re following those metrics.

      How long does it take to improve cardiovascular endurance?

      The exact schedule varies based on your current fitness level. There is good news for beginners. “About the end of the second week, you’ll find significant improvements if you are consistent,” Sims says. For example, you may notice that you can continue to run a little longer, or that your heart rate is not as high while running, she explains.

      If you are more experienced, the timeline varies more. It can take up to two months, I noticed, because your body is already used to this stress. In this case, she recommends working in intervals along with your long, slow sessions to relieve stress on your body — and keep motivation.

      Do you have 20 minutes? Try this cardio exercise:

      What happens to your cardiovascular endurance if you get injured?

      Fortunately, it doesn’t take much to maintain your stamina. According to Sims, you can use alternative forms of exercise that are appropriate to your injury and cause cardiovascular strain to do so.

      Approximately two days of this alternate exercise each week, to reach your normal rate of perceived exertion, is what she recommends. She adds that if you’re trying to build stamina after an injury, you’re looking at more than two days a week — but don’t build up too quickly and risk another injury. Of course, check with your doctor for clearance exercises at all, and to make sure alternatives are safe to try while you’re recovering.

      minimum: Cardiovascular endurance is an important aspect of fitness – no matter where you are on your fitness journey. There are plenty of ways to create it and track your progress on your own or with a professional.

      This content is created and maintained by a third party, and is imported on this page to help users provide their email address. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at