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In Defense of Cardio: It's Good For Your Brain

In Defense of Cardio: It's Good For Your Brain


I've seen a lot of cardio bashing recently. It reminds me of the Atkins Diet-inspired carb bashing that took place in the 90s. There are so many reasons aerobic training is good for your body, and to that list we need to add that it also benefits your brain. Now what do you think about that?

According to Dr. John Medina, author of Brain Rules, cardiovascular exercise dramatically increases blood flow to very specific parts of the brain that govern learning, problem solving, emotional control, and reaction time. Strength training, which offers many benefits on its own, doesn't help the brain in these ways.

During a recent interview on Fitness Rocks Medina explained that within four months there are measurable improvements with just a moderate amount of weekly exercise. However, skip working out for over a week and you will begin to lose all the wonderful brain function you gained by increasing the blood flow to your gray matter. Surely that fact will motivate you to get off the couch and out the door.

So if you have given up cardio like Michelle Pfeiffer, you might just want to rethink your plan.

Tell me in the comments section below why you do cardio – for your brain, your heart, your waist line, or your peace of mind.

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