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In this video we discuss how to improve your cardiovascular system, which can improve your endurance, overall health, and overall fitness. Transcript/notes Your cardiovascular system consists mainly of the heart, and blood vessels which are important in pumping blood, which delivers nutrients to all parts of your body. Having a strong cardiovascular system allows your body to work more efficiently, improves your stamina, can improve your brain function, athletic performance and even improves sleep quality. There are 3 main ways to improve your cardiovascular system, through exercise, through good nutritional habits, and getting proper rest. Exercise helps to strengthen your heart. Over time, if you stay consistent in doing exercise, your heart becomes more efficient as it pumps more blood per beat that it did before. So, the heart can pump more oxygen rich blood throughout the body with less beats. This also means that your resting heart beat will decrease, making it much more efficient. There are 2 main types of exercises that can be beneficial, aerobic exercise, and resistance or strength training. Aerobic exercise is any type of exercise that raises your heartbeat such as walking, running, and even playing sports. Beginners can start off by walking or jogging. Doing either of these on a consistent basis, will cause your body to adapt, strengthening your cardiovascular system in response to these exercises. Sports is one of the best forms of cardio because many times it is like an interval where you are exerting a lot of energy in bursts, then lower energy in bursts, so there is a constant change in heartbeat. Playing tennis, racquetball, basketball, and volleyball are all great sports, and are offered at many different places. Resistance or strength training can increase muscle mass, improve coordination and also provides an increase in heartbeat. Doing bouts of circuit training sessions, where you go from exercise to exercise with little to no rest in between the exercises is a great way to keep your heartbeat up and build muscle at the same time. Nutrition can have a major effect on your cardiovascular system. 2 of the biggest things with nutrition are not over consuming calories, and making sure you are getting plenty of fruits, veggies and other plant based foods. Consistently over consuming calories can lead to weight gain or an increase in fat storage, which can compress organs and blood vessels, making it more difficult to deliver nutrients throughout your body, and carrying extra weight puts more stress on bones and joints, increasing injury risk. Make sure you eating plenty of fruits, veggies and plant foods as many of these contain vitamins and minerals, which help your body function properly, fiber, which keeps your digestion strong, and they also contain many antioxidants and phytonutrients, which help your body fight off harmful free radicals and foreign invaders. Getting good quality sleep can also be beneficial to your cardiovascular health, as sleep is a time when your heartbeat slows down, giving your heart a bit of a break. It also stimulates tissue growth and muscle repair, giving your body a sort of recovery period. 7 to 9 hours of good quality sleep are recommended for most adults.