Exercising in a heated environment may seem uncomfortable and, well, a tad on the crazy side… but as it turns out elevated temperatures can work wonders for improving both your exercise performance and your overall health.
When the body is exposed to high temperatures, substances known as ‘Heat Shock’ proteins are formed, and function as a kind of shield to protect the body. New research from Rhonda Patrick, and others (yep her from the Jo Rogan show), has shown these have incredible health benefits. Here are 10 awesome reasons for choosing to exercise in the heat!
Muscle Strength & Repair
Working out in high temperatures both reduces recovery time and boosts muscle development.
Proteins in the body work to safeguard proper muscle functioning by repairing and rebuilding muscles during and after a workout. Heat Shock proteins speed up and enhance this process, so you’ll be a super-human hulk in no time!
An increase blood flow to the muscles brought on by high temperatures reduces the need for the body to rely on glycogen stores as an energy supply. Blood flow to the heart is also increased, so less effort is needed for the heart to pump blood around the body. This in turn leaves the body more energy for your workout and improves endurance.
A recent study on 6 distance runners showed that through regular heat exposure, just twice per week, they were able to increase their running distance by 32%!
Increased Brain Development
Heat acclimatisation can increase Brain-power. WOOHOO!
Studies have shown that regular heat exposure increases chemicals in the brain which repair nerve cell damage and increase the brains capacity for learning, memory and focus. Heat acclimatisation also helps increase in growth of new brain cells and the strengthening of existing ones- neurogenesis.
No wonder Bikram Yogis are so wise…
Heat exposure has been linked to longer lifespan. WOOHOO AGAIN!
Over 2000 men took part in a study where they regularly visited the sauna, and after a 20 year follow up the results showed that for those men who visited the sauna a few times a week, death by cardiovascular disease was 50% less likely, and generally mortality was decreased by 24%! High fives all round
Sauna use and the working out in the heated environment of a Hot Yoga or Pilates class triggers similar processes in the body. So, if you’re aiming to live forever, exercising in the Bikram Southside is place to be!
Heat exposure can improve mood and increase happiness!
More so than exercise alone, working out in the heat creates a flow of endorphins in the brain which can leave you feeling euphoric and even high. This is because the production of endorphins is not only increased by exercise, but also by the amount of fresh blood circulating throughout your body, which is increased by the heat.
You may have heard or experienced ‘Runners high’, well wait until you experience your first ‘Bikram Buzz’! Why not send your spouse next time you forget to do the tidying up.
Just do it
There are so many more benefits, we had to do another blog. Always remember to exercize with caution, as too much yoga has been known to cause really high levels of happiness, and Bikram Southside cannot be held responsible for subsequent behaviour.
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