Breathing For Exercise Energy: Jump Starting Your Heart

By: Robert Kokoska

Many people will give excuse after excuse for not exercising during the day. While the number one excuse is not having enough time, the second excuse used most often is not having enough energy. Energy will remain low as long as the mind is in the avoidance mode. Once you convince yourself that exercise is fun and you WANT to do it, the exercise will return, like MAGIC! In order to jump start those energy levels, exercise breathing can help.

Exercise breathing is like a warm up for the lungs. It gets the body moving and the lungs working in a similar way to how they will be working during the fitness routine. Once the lungs are moving briskly, the heart will kick in and the energy levels of the body will rise.

If you have ever noticed during an exercise routine that after the first 10 or 15 minutes, the exercise does not seem so hard and the energy levels needed to continue are there you understand the forces behind exercise breathing. There are four steps to breathing for energy and they are:

* Take deep breaths. Kind of like stretching the lungs, you want to begin your exercise breathing with long inhales and slow exhales. These will warm up the lungs for the volume of oxygen they are about to experience. These slow breathing exercises should be repeated for 10 to 15 repetitions.

* Rate your energy level. As you are deep breathing, mentally rate your energy level. This will give you a guideline by which to compare your energy level after the breathing exercise. As you slowly breath in and out, notice any changes in energy level. Toward the end of the warm up, you should feel a bit more energized than before you began.

* Moving to abdominal breathing. Now you will move the breathing exercises to the abdomen. As you breath in, fill the abdomen with air and do not move the shoulders. This is all about the tummy. Count the amount of seconds it takes to fill the tummy and exhale at the same rate. You want to breathe in and out just deep enough to not become dizzy from the process. We are not filling a balloon here, just warming up the body. Continue this exercise for three minutes.

* Rate your energy level again. After the three minutes, there should be a marked change in energy level. Your lungs are now warm and ready to move to the music of exercise. This practice can be used at any time during the day when you need a boost of energy, but especially when you are too tired to exercise. These tips can be repeated as a cool down after exercising.

Breathing is the ideal way to give your body back that little spark it needs to move on with the daily exercise routine. Life is all about balance and when we balance our workouts to include our entire body, they will help us to become a healthier person all around for now and tomorrow.

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