It’s not just what you eat that affects your skin; it’s how you exercise too. There’s a secret formula to exercise that will maximize your ability to reduce fine lines and wrinkles, exfoliate your skin and leave it glowing and refreshed.
Why Does Exercise Create Skin Glow?
As you exercise your body increases blood flow and your body becomes bathed in nutrients that repair damaged skin, reducing your chance of getting fine lines and wrinkles.
Blood flow increases because of vasodilation or the relaxation of your blood vessels that let the blood flow freely throughout your body. When this happens not only is your body repairing and healing your damaged tissue, but the vasodilation simultaneously causes your skin to look lively and refreshed.
If you suffer from skin conditions such as eczema, vasodilation may relieve your symptoms. Over time vasodilation reduces inflammation in your body which can reduce uncomfortable, embarrassing flare ups. Exercise also reduces stress levels which may reduce stress associated eczema flare ups.
A good sweat may help unclog pores, but wiping off with a towel exfoliates your skin and takes away dead skin cells, which rejuvenates your appearance. Dare we say it’s the cost effective version of microdermabrasion.
Resistance training creates toned, lean muscles that fill out loose, saggy skin, and leaves it looking fuller and plumper.
Let’s not forget how amazing exercise is at improving your sleep quality, and when you sleep well your skin has time to repair.
The Secret Exercise Formula:
Any exercise is good exercise if you love what you’re doing. But if you want that added skin glow there are a few simple techniques you can use to maximize your results. Adjust the quantity, the intensity, the type and location of workout to maximize your glow.
Keep your heart rate at a moderate activity level: What does a moderate heart rate look like? Do a quick calculation to find your target heart rate zone. I promise, it’s not rocket science. It’s simple and effortless.Moderate exercise is considered approximately 75% of your maximal heart rate so we’re simply giving a number value to our moderate exercise effort. Here’s the formula:
(220 – Age) x 75% = Your moderate Heart Rate
For a 50 year old woman: the heart rate would be (220-50) x75% = 128 heart beats per minute.
Because your heart rate may drop quickly during exercise and you don’t want to let that happen, check your pulse for only 10 seconds. There are six 10 seconds in 1 minute. You’ll count 21 beats in 10 seconds for moderate intensity (128 /6=21).
The math is over, I promise. The point is to keep your heart rate consistently in your moderate heart rate zone. As time progresses you’ll become so familiar with the feel of your body at moderate intensity that you’ll no longer need to check your heart rate as frequently.
Exercise for 30 minutes at least three times a week: Long bouts of exercise may have the opposite effect than what you’re looking for. Your skin temperature rises during exercise. Prolonged bouts of elevated body temperature have been known to worsen skin conditions such as eczema and rosacea which is the exact opposite effect we were hoping to achieve. Play it safe and choose shorter bouts of exercise. 30 minutes at least three times a week is all you need to get the age defying skin results you’re looking for. Increase your activity to 30 minutes every day and you may see results sooner.
Balance it out: The best exercise program for your skin is a well-rounded routine that includes both aerobic and resistance training. Circuits are by far your best option. They incorporate a variety of fitness moves that increase your heart rate and tone and define. In between exercises you’ll have time to check your heart rate and make sure you’re in the moderate heart zone. By having a well-rounded program you’ll successfully maximize your time and effort to create healthy glowing skin.
Keep it indoors: There may be a reason why ultra-marathoners and endurance athletes have weathered skin. Runners are wonderful but let’s face it, the elements age us. So simply for the sake of your skin, keep your workout indoors. If you’re dying for a bit of fresh air, in summer wear hydrating sunblock with an added moisturizer and in winter bundle up. Re-apply an extra layer of moisturizer after your workout.
Sample circuit to maximize skin glow:
Do 15 reps of each exercise. Repeat circuit until 30 minutes are complete. Take breaks when needed to check your heart rate and ensure you’re in your moderate heart rate zone. Don’t forget to warm up and cool down.
Forward lunges with bicep curls:
Hold a dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing up and arms by your side. Take a step forward and bend your front knee into a lunge.
At the same time curl your arms up, palms towards your shoulders.
Return to starting position
Switch legs and continue bicep movement on the other side.
March in place with lateral raise: March in place while you extend your arms to the side, your elbows at shoulder height. Lower arms to side. This counts as one repetition. Repeat.
Backwards lunge with row:
Hold a dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing up and arms by your side.
Step one leg back. Squeeze the butt and bend your front leg.
Tip from the hips, belly button to spine. Extend both arms in front of you, then pull the weight back as you squeeze your shoulder blades together. Repeat on opposite leg.
Triceps push ups to standing:
Stand with your feet shoulder width apart.
Bend your knees and squat down.
Place your palms on the ground.
Step your legs back into a triceps push up position. Hands are under your shoulders, arms squeezed along your side.
Lower your chest to the ground (go on knees as an option) and then push yourself back up. Elbows slide along your side. Step your feet in and stand up.
Hold one dumbbell or one medicine ball with both hands, feet shoulder width apart.
Bend your knees and sit back while simultaneously extending your arms across your body, below your knee.
As you stand up, move the dumbbell across your body diagonally over your shoulder while rotating the torso.
Repeat on the same side for 15 repetitions and then do the other side for 15 repetitions.
*photos courtesy of: Health Care Gta fitness About health well-girl eye of the lioness
Disclaimer: Consult a physician before starting any exercise program. If you choose to do this or any workout without consulting your physician, you are doing so at your own risk. We claim no responsibility for any injuries you might sustain. It is your responsibility to warm up properly and cool down after your workout. Do not attempt any exercise you are not capable of performing. Stay within your fitness level