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Shawnee Mission Medical Center Health Blog

Heart Health: Is it possible to exercise too much?

Posted by Sarah Eisenbraun on Oct 1, 2013 1:58:00 PM


Everyone knows the extensive health benefits of exercise, but is it possible to exercise too much? Regular exercise has been shown to deliver a multitude of health benefits such as lower cholesterol and weight management, yet recent studies show that it may be possible to push your body over the edge with an overly excessive exercise routine.

In February of 2013, Danish researchers conducted a study involving 1,900 people who regularly jogged approximately 2.5 hours per week. The study showed that these test subjects lived on average 6 years longer than those tested running faster and over longer distances during the same time period. Additionally, this research indicated that a regular marathon running routine can increase the risk of abnormal heart rate, damage to heart tissue, and vascular issues such as hardening of the arteries.

In June of this year, Swedish researchers reported their findings from a study conducted involving elite cross-country skiers. Those skiers who had the fastest time completing a 56 mile marathon were 30% more likely to be hospitalized for an irregular heartbeat upon completion of the competition.

However, many cardiologists do not necessarily suggest curtailing one's exercise routine according to research conducted involving extreme exercise regimens such as those indicated above. For some who are looking to gain the benefits of rigorous exercise such as weight loss, intense workout routines can be ideal. For most, moderate and consistent activity is more beneficial than a rigorous or intense exercise routine. A moderate exercise plan designed with the help of your doctor will maximize cardiac health and overall wellness.

It is important to seek out a doctor's professional opinion as well as undergoing a physical examination before beginning any exercise routine, especially during cardiac rehabilitation. At Shawnee Mission Medical Center, doctors and medical personnel work with you to build the best plan for your particular heart health needs. The cardiac team at Shawnee Mission Medical Center believes in complete balanced wellness and can design the right rehabilitation program to aid you in attaining your unique, complete body health. For more information please contact us.

Topics: Heart and Vascular Center

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