Exercising with friends allows you to morally support each other, and, when the time comes, to have the collective muscle to beat up an asteroid headed for Earth. Get strength in numbers with this Groupon.
Choose Between Two Options
- $25 for 5 CrossFit classes (a $100 value)
- $39 for 10 CrossFit classes (a $200 value)
CrossFit instructors lead groups through a changing lineup of intense, functional exercises. Each day, these instructors create a new 60-minute workout, or WOD. WODs might incorporate fat-burning exercises such as dead lifts, back presses, and front squats. Click here to see the training schedule.
Exercise doesn’t always feel great when you start out. Take inspiration during your next workout by understanding the good it’s doing inside with Groupon’s whirlwind tour of the cardiovascular system.
The Cardiovascular System: How Exercise Makes It Hum
The average person’s heart beats 100,000 times a day, pushing 10 pints of blood all the way to the tips of the toes and back through 60,000 miles of vessels. Along this route, the cardiovascular system stops to do a great many errands. The heart pumps blood to the lungs to collect oxygen before sending it through the rest of the body via arteries, arterioles, and capillaries. Once the tissues have absorbed the oxygen and nutrients they need, they send the waste-filled blood back to the heart through the veins to be reoxygenated and start the process again.
Every time our heart beats, what we really feel is the opening and closing of valves that push the blood through the heart’s four chambers and out to the body. When we exercise or get scared by a shrub that looked like a huge dog for a second, our brains instruct the heart to beat harder to supply the body with what it needs to fight or run. As exercise enhances the muscles over time, it also improves the function of the entire cardiovascular system.
This happens in several ways. Although exercise makes the heart work harder in the short term, this ultimately causes the body to adapt, easing the heart’s everyday tasks. In response to muscles’ demand for more oxygen and compliments, the body actually sprouts new capillaries, while prompting existing capillaries to open wider. These increased channels help lower blood pressure, since blood now encounters less resistance on its way to the extremities. The heart also becomes better at oxygenating the tissues—red blood cells increase their numbers during intense exercise.
With its insistent knocking in our ribcage, you may think the heart’s role in all this would be hard to ignore. But the earliest anatomists didn’t hear its call so clearly. Galen and Hippocrates believed the liver produced blood and spread it through the body in a centrifugal manner; meanwhile, the veins contained air, which the lungs pushed to the tissues. They also assumed this was an open-ended system, with the blood and air gradually dissipating when it reached the ends of veins and arteries—a view that would hold for another 1,500 years.
At CrossFit IV, NASM-certified personal trainer Archie Brown and fellow trainer Matt Cook introduce CrossFit's functional exercises to nearly all ages. Their CrossFit Kids program welcomes children as young as 3 and their adult program welcomes grown-ups as old as 147. Both programs revolve around CrossFit's daily workout. Depending on the day, the workout may include rope climbs, pull-ups, dead lifts, box jumps, or the tyke-size version of box jumps—hopping on a short stack of weights. With both CrossFit Level 1 and CrossFit Kids certifications, Brown and Cook know exactly what they're doing when coordinating classes.