If you need to lower your blood pressure, working out can help. The following are some simple exercises to help with high blood pressure.
If you have high blood pressure (hypertension), it’s a good idea to exercise regularly if you want to strengthen your heart. “High blood pressure can lead to stroke, heart attack, heart failure, and even kidney issues,” says clinical exercise physiologist Laura Gray, ACSM-CEP, MS.
Exercise can help manage your blood pressure in various ways such as managing your weight, decreasing stress, and keeping your heart healthy. However, according to Gray, there are a few things to keep in mind.
“You have to be mindful of your breathing,” she explains. For example, don’t do the Valsalva maneuver, which is holding your breath while weightlifting. “Focusing on breath control will help eliminate a significant elevation in blood pressure.”
Also, make sure you incorporate five to 10 minutes of warm-up and cool-down to avoid injuries and drastic changes in blood pressure. Getting 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week is the goal, but you should break it up throughout the week.
“You can start your exercise in 10-minute increments if you’re just getting started back into an exercise routine,” Gray recommends. In addition, you should be pushing yourself without going too hard. “If you’re on a treadmill or walking, [you should] only be able to get out a few words,” says Gray. “You definitely wouldn’t be able to sing or easily have a full conversation.”
Exercises for High Blood Pressure
The best type of exercise you can do is aerobic exercise, which includes a variety of workouts. You can do aqua aerobics, Zumba, jogging, and more. Aerobic classes can help you plan out your weekly workouts in advance.
Other simple aerobic activities include brisk walking, cycling, dancing, gardening, hiking, running or jogging, and swimming. In other words, there are a variety of activities to choose from; you just have to choose the one that works best for you.
According to Gray, you should also avoid going too strong at the beginning if you’re just starting out. “For someone with high blood pressure, high intensity might be a little bit tough,” says Gray. “It can be something you do eventually, but I wouldn’t start with that if you’re just starting exercise.”
Making Exercise Work for You
By focusing on aerobic activities that you like doing, you’ll be more likely to keep doing them, which will benefit your blood pressure. “In order to keep up a lifestyle and see those true lifestyle changes, you want to make sure you have that planned exercise rather than just physical activity,” says Gray.
In addition to exercise, you can also give your health an extra boost by eating healthily and taking supplements like L-arginine Plus. Its ingredients promote circulation, blood pressure, and overall heart health. Give your health the support it needs right now by adding regular exercise to your routine and taking L-arginine Plus.