Cardiovascular training is a must for losing weight and maintaining overall fitness and wellness. However, becoming a strong cardiovascular athlete isn’t always easy. Your endurance and stamina take time to build up and it needs to be done properly to help you get the most out of your training safely.
Exercising the entire respiratory system -- the lungs, diaphragm, oral cavity, nose, larynx, trachea, etc. -- is the first step in improving lung capacity. Breathing exercises involve taking in as much as as possible to fully extend the lungs and diaphragm. Performing them regularly can help you train longer and harder while also reducing stress and anxiety, which can bring with them a whole host of negative health effects.
For some examples of breathing exercises, check out this blog post. Aim to perform any of them for up to 10 minutes a day.
Supplements for Respiratory Health
In order to support the health of your respiratory system, you can add certain supplements to your daily routine. Herbs like butterbur, boswelia and ivy leaf extract can help reduce inflammation and keep the airways open. Also make sure you’re getting all your recommended vitamins and minerals for antioxidant support -- a multivitamin will cover all your bases. Lastly, essential fatty acids can also reduce inflammation that can restrict the airways -- try a fish oil or flaxseed oil supplement.
Another holistic solution to try for respiratory health and better lung capacity is a Himalayan sea salt inhaler, which can reduce mucus and toxins that impact breathing.
Training Tips to Increase Lung Capacity
Breathing properly during training allows the muscles and organs to remain properly oxygenated. This helps them function properly to prevent injury and improve performance. Here are some tips and strategies to help you breathe better:
- Always avoid holding your breath when straining.
- Learn to breathe from your belly, instead of your chest. Your belly should expand as you take oxygen in.
- Take oxygen in through your nose and out through your mouth.
- Time your breathing to the movement. If you’re lifting weights, exhale as you lift or push the weight and inhale between reps. If you’re doing cardio, try counting out your breaths so you inhale and exhale for the same amount of time.
- Do exercises to strengthen and stretch your abdomen. Yoga and pilates are great options.
If you have a respiratory disorder, like asthma, or if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, be sure to speak with your physician before making any changes to your medication and/or supplement routine.
Try these tips to increase your lung capacity and smash your own personal records. Check back tomorrow for more health news and tips.