NEW YORK, June 26 (UPI) -- Exercise can be thought of as the fountain of youth, and summer is the perfect time to reconnect with your body, a U.S. exercise expert says.
Dr. Holly Andersen, director of education and outreach at the Ronald O. Perelman Heart Institute at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center, said consult a physician before beginning or changing an exercise regimen.
"Your doctor may want to first perform an exercise test to prescribe a program that is safe for you," Andersen said in a statement. "Take your workout indoors. When it is too hot or humid outside, exercise in a cool, air-conditioned space. Extreme temperatures can alter your circulation, increasing the work of your heart and making breathing more difficult."
Exercise must be approached one step at a time, and not simply in short bursts or over weekends.
"Regular exercise decreases high blood pressure, lowers the bad cholesterol and increases the protective cholesterol," said Dr. Maryjane Farr, a cardiologist at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center. "Any form of exercise substantially reduces the risk for cardiovascular disease."
Andersen and Farr also suggested people remember to stretch, and drink plenty of fluids throughout a workout routine, and without waiting to feel thirsty.
Also, try to maintain an even body temperature, exercise during cooler hours and do not take an extremely hot or cold shower or a sauna after a workout, as these can increase the heart's workload.
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