You consider yourself a healthy person – you exercise regularly, you eat the healthy foods and you do all the right things. Except you have this little bad habit that perhaps keeps you away from achieving even better results and performing to the fullest! So, is there a significant difference between the smoking fitness fans and the non-smokers?
That’s what we’re going to talk about today and I sincerely hope that this article will provoke some deep thinking inside of your minds.
The first and most important process that smoking impedes is the proper muscle formation during the workouts. Since smoking diminishes the level of oxygen in blood, it disrupts the transport of necessary nutrients and minerals that are VITAL for muscle development and growth. If you’re not getting as much as you can from your workouts, you obviously have to exercise longer and harder in order to reach your goals.
Other studies show that smoking increases the level of stress in your body and thus decreases your endurance and strength by as much as 10%. Let me give you some more figures. Non-smoking fitness fans’ heartbeat was proved to be 30% slower and more stable, which allows a balanced performance with less energy cost. Smoking athletes showed on average a 20% weaker performance and resistance to difficult training techniques than the non-smokers. Besides showing a significantly better performance, the non-smoking fitness fans applied less force and stress upon their bodies during exercises.
Medical researchers have proved that smoking reduces your lung capacity which significantly lowers the amount of energy your body can produce. When you’re pumping iron at the gym or running your 7th kilometer, maximum energy is all you need – and that’s exactly what you’re missing out on if you’re smoking! Studies proved that non-smoker fitness fans were more successful at lifting heavy weights during complex sets of exercises and at a longer duration.
Another important aspect to consider is the precision and speed of reaction that is at a far better level for non-smokers. Weightlifting, bench presses and squats require a certain level of reaction, concentration and time which might not be always at an adequate level for smokers. This might cause dropping weights and unwanted injuries.
I have also encountered expert opinions that stated that “exercising regularly and smoking regularly” are two things that can never be combined. Besides exposing your body to higher risks, being an exercising smoker is considered being damaging and harmful in the long run. What they mean is that the diseases that exercising smokers may develop, usually only manifest 10 to 15 years later. Such include a variety of cardiovascular diseases and increased blood pressure diseases that are only aggravated by the exercises.
Other opinions on exercising smokers were slightly less negative. Some experts believed that exercising and smoking is still better than just being a smoking couch potato. Exercise is undoubtedly beneficial for every person and it helps repairing the damages caused by smoking. Exercising strengthens the body’s immune system that, in return, fights harder against your little bad habit. Nevertheless, I must stress that both sides admitted the risks of cardiovascular and heart diseases that the exercising routine cannot rescue the smokers from.
I guess I’ll leave the conclusion up to you. I’m not a smoker and won’t be able to share my experience on this matter with you. All I can say is, your health is priceless, so think about it before you light up another one…