You know that smoking is bad for you. Not only is it a bad habit, but it is a physiological addiction. Over the years I’ve had many clients who were smokers (whether they’d admit it or not), and I’d like to share my personal training advice and perspective of the effects of smoking and working out.
Over the past couple of decades more than enough information has been made available to the public that emphasizes the importance of quitting smoking. In fact, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) estimates that over half of America’s 45 millions smokers try to quit each year. That’s a phenomenal amount of people! There are many smoking cessation tools available to help you quit including patches, gum, and prescriptions to name a few. Each of these tools provide a powerful weapon for quitting and each person needs to choose their own plan of action. Working out and increasing your level of physical fitness can also help you on your fight to become smoke free! As always, consult your physician before undertaking a physical fitness routine.
Those of you who have a rocking body, washboard abs, 5% body fat or think they are at their “peak” of physical fitness; if you’re a smoker… think again!
Less oxygen to your muscles means lower output. Smoking increases tissue inflammation in the lungs, constricting blood vessels, and allows for less oxygen to circulate through your body. Therefore your strength and endurance are negatively effected if you’re a smoker. While you still may be able to kick butt in your spin class, or hit your goal bench press weight, if you were a non smoker you’d be able to achieve even more! Exercise can increase your maximal oxygen uptake by 20%, and smoking can reduce this by 10%. The best fitness tips in the world don’t matter if you’re negating them with smoking.
Smoking is an addiction. Inhaling that cigarette smoke begins a chain of chemical processes in the body on which you’re body comes to rely. However in my experience with clients, the problem is not the physical addition, but the mental addiction. I’ve seen clients drenched in sweat having just finished a grueling workout step out side and light up! This isn’t your body screaming for nicotine, this is YOU subconsciously rewarding yourself with a smoke for a job well done. Pay attention to these behaviors!
Smoking increases your blood pressure. Within 20 minutes of putting out a smoke, your blood pressure and pulse begin to normalize and within 8 hours of not smoking your blood oxygen level starts to recover and carbon monoxide levels go down. Exercise increases your body’s oxygen intake. The more fit your are, the more efficient your body is at utilizing oxygen. It stands to reason that if you’re a fit person, and you just had a great workout, your body is even more efficient at circulating all those carcinogens of cigarette smoke when you light up. Especially while you’re heart rate is still pumping from your workout!
Use your workouts to be a motivation to quit smoking, not a free pass to keep smoking! If you absolutely feel the need to light up after your workouts, at least avoid the nasty cigarette smoke and try an electronic cigarette!
Quitting smoking is hard. Chances are you may not be successful on your first try. But if you’re conscious of your habits and work on changing behaviors, you will be able to do it. Decide with smoking cessation tools are right for you. If you’re interested in checking out smokeless electronic cigarettes as an option, use Promo Code: JUNE10 to save 10% off any purchase at TheSafeCig.
About Riley Daye
Riley Daye is an ACE Certified Personal Trainer and Lifestyle and Weightloss Consultant. He is a Los Angeles Personal Trainer and Lifestyle Consultant who specializes in Weight Loss and Sport Specific Training. Contact Riley to schedule a private consultation.