It’s Valentines Day soon and as exercise enthusiasts we can’t stop thinking about the heart – how it works for us day and night to not only stay alive, but live well. It’s therefore only right that we pay tribute to the heart, who as a small heart cell at a mere age of four weeks, squeezes out its first beat and works non-stop from then on.
We don’t always listen to it, but when we do we realise how empowered it can make us feel. It makes sure we are healthy and warns us when we aren’t, it quickens when it’s trying to tell us to stop competing in the rat race, and it works to give us the gift of love. Whether you’re exercising, stressing, or falling in love, you know you are alive because your blood is pumping and your heart is racing.
Of all the athletes out there the heart is by far the best, fastest, and strongest. No athlete can sprint, cycle or pump iron to the extent that the heart does; 100 000 times a day to be exact, pumping 1,5 gallons of blood every minute. The heart is the body’s top gold medalist, doing more physical work than any other muscle in the body. Thank goodness our hearts are on our side, beating eagerly to help us win the race too. In fact, exercising the heart by engaging in physical activity can cause an adrenaline response that is good for the heart and good for gold.
Of all the relationships out there the heart is by far the most passionate, loving and loyal companion. It works with the other parts of the body in union. It understands the necessity of give and take, with the right side pumping blood into your lungs and the left side pumping it backs into your body. Plus, the adrenaline response the heart receives, when the brain registers love, can affect how vigorously the heart squeezes. Without the love of the heart, we cease to love.
So remember, the heart adores you when you adore the heart. Keep your Valentine cozy, and your heart even cozier. If you aren’t showing your heart love in the following forms, make February 14 the day each year you reset these good habits:
- Eat healthy.
- Get active.
- Stay at a healthy weight.
- Quit smoking and stay away from secondhand smoke.
- Control your cholesterol and blood pressure.
- If you drink alcohol, drink only in moderation.
- Manage stress.