Cardio Exercise Linked to Longer Life


Cardio isn’t dead.

What’s happening: A new study suggests higher levels of cardiorespiratory fitness cut all-cause mortality risk by up to 17% and CVD risk by 18%.

Dose responsive, the authors say increasing “huff and puff” exercise could help prevent heart failure, depression, diabetes, dementia, and even cancer.

Running It Back

Strength training’s rise casts a shadow on cardio, but Zone 2 exercise is leading a revival.

Repackaged as a longevity hack, workouts in the “mellow” second heart rate zone are said to boost metabolism, mitochondrial function, and more.

Heart in the game. With heart health in focus, brands are reinvesting in aerobic training.

  • Oura launched Cardio Capacity, forecasting fitness and bodily function with VO2 max.
  • Technogym debuted heart rate zone training for its smart treadmills.
  • FitLab bought cardio equipment maker Assault Fitness with plans to scale distribution.

With consumers upping casual cardio, run groups are proliferating, and race sign-ups gained 9.8% YoY last year. Benefitting from the boom, rucking outfitter GORUCK saw sales leap 40% in ’23.

A caveat, Zone 2 may be much less effective for women than men, stressing the need for more sex-specific studies.

Takeaway: With nearly half of Americans failing to achieve recommended activity levels, cardio needs a major comeback. Connecting it to longer life, free exercise like running, walking, and calisthenics becomes an easy sell.

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