Physical endurance is the ability of the body to maintain an effort for several minutes without experiencing signs of fatigue (decrease in strength, cramps, shortness of breath). It can be reinforced by appropriate physical activities practiced in a regular manner: walking, swimming, cycling, jogging, etc. The benefits of endurance exercises are significant and varied: strengthening of skeletal and heart muscles, improvement in respiration, oxygenation of organs, and blood circulation. By promoting the use of lipid reserves by the muscles, endurance exercises help control weight problems. They also improve the sensation of well-being and contribute to fighting stress and anxiety.
Walking can be practiced anywhere, without equipment. It burns approximately 300 calories per hour and is a good exercise for leg muscles. Walking must be relatively rapid and last at least 30 minutes per day. Jogging is more intense than walking. One hour of jogging at the rate of 7.5 miles per hour (12 km/h) burns approximately 900 calories. It must be practiced with the appropriate shoes to reduce the risk of joint trauma in the knees and ankles.
In addition to being an ecological method of transportation, cycling is an excellent endurance and muscle-building exercise for the legs and back. A distance of approximately 12½ miles (20 km) per hour can be equivalent to burning 500 calories.
Swimming is a cardiovascular activity, but also a complete muscle-building exercise, particularly recommended for people who suffer from back pain. One hour of swimming is equal to burning 600 calories.
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