Let´s talk about muscles. How many muscles are there in the human body? It´s hard to say. Usually, the number oscillates between 640 to 850 named muscles. It depends on how you count them.
There is more agreement to classify them into three categories: skeletal, cardiac, and smooth.
If the cardiac muscle doesn´t work right, the whole system doesn´t work. Often, healthy people forget this point. Fitness is about good looking but also, about good health. The primary muscle of every single athlete is the heart.
Cardiac muscle is a striated muscle, but its contractions are involuntary. Some of the cardiac muscle cells are autorhythmic. They contract even in the absence of neuronal innervation (known as pacemaker cells). Between cardiac muscles cells, there are disks intercalated. These disks contain gap junctions which provide communicating channels between cells.
Inactivity is one of the major risk factors for heart disease. Exercise helps improve heart health, and can reverse some heart disease risk factors.
The heart becomes stronger as a result of exercise, so it can pump more blood through the body with every beat. Any amount of exercise is beneficial. If you are a sedentary person, aim for 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity (such as brisk walking) at least 5 days a week. Experts recommend doing some form of moderate aerobic activity for at least 150 minutes or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity each week. You can spread the minutes out in any manner that works for your schedule. The key is scheduling some form of moderate to vigorous cardiovascular activity into your week and actually doing it. You can also switch between running, cycling, swimming, interval or circuit training.
Regular exercise, especially aerobic exercise, has many benefits. This type of activity can do the following:
- Strengthen your heart and cardiovascular system
- Improve your circulation and help your body use oxygen better
- Improve your heart failure symptoms
- Increase energy levels so you can do more activities without becoming tired or short of breath
- Increase endurance
- Lower blood pressure
- Improve muscle tone and strength
- Improve balance and joint flexibility
- Strengthen bones
- Help reduce body fat and help you reach a healthy weight
- Help reduce stress, tension, anxiety and depression
- Boost self-image and self-esteem
- Improve sleep
- Make you feel more relaxed and rested
- Make you look fit and feel healthy
In time, you can make your workouts longer or more challenging. Do that gradually, so your body can adjust.
Stop and get immediate medical help if you have pain or pressure in your chest or the upper part of your body, break out in a cold sweat, have trouble breathing, uneven heart rate, or feel dizzy, lightheaded, or very tired.
It’s normal for your muscles to be sore for a day or two after your workout when you’re new to exercise. That fades as your body gets used to it. Soon, you might be surprised to find that you like how you feel when you’re done.