Fitness in relation to Smoking

Emilie Kilvington

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There are a lot of major effects of smoking on fitness. They include:

- Less muscle strength and flexibility
- Suffer shortness of breath 3 times more often than non smokers
- Increased risk of osteoporosis, hip fractures, low back pain, rheumatoid arthritis and exercise related injuries.
- High levels of carbon monoxide from smoking reduce the amount of oxygen absorbed into the blood from the lungs.
- Carbon monoxide in the blood also reduces the amount of oxygen that is released from the blood into the muscles.
- Smoke inhalation has an immediate effect on respiration, increasing airways resistance and therefore reducing the amount of oxygen absorbed into the blood.
- Smoking reduces fitness and sporting performance. If you smoke or use tobacco products, you are not going to be able to run as fast or as far as your smoke free team mates.

- Tobacco slows down your lung growth and reduces lung function. That can leave you gulping for air when you need it most. - Young smokers suffer from shortness of breath almost three times as often as teens who do not smoke. Breath is something an athlete cannot afford to be short of.
- A smoker’s heart has to work much harder than that of a non-smoker. So in competition, your body wastes a lot more energy just trying to keep up with non-smokers.Smokers take longer to heal from injuries than non smokers, this includes surgical interventions.

Smokers tend to be less physically active than non-smokers. Some people smoke as a weight control measure. But the links between smoking and less physical activity interferes with effective weight control. Men who smoke expend fewer calories per day than non smokers. Also the fat of smokers tends to be distributed in a less healthy pattern around the body.

Studies have shown that occasional exercise for regular smokers may aid in reducing craving for cigarettes.

How Smoking Effects Your Health

Although the negative health effectsof cigarette smoking cannot be debated, it remains the single most common cause of preventable deaths. Each year, over 430,000 people die as a result of a smoking related disease. Yet, over 50 million continue to smoke, including over 3 million teens. An estimated three thousand teenagers begin to smoke each day, and one thousand of them will eventually die as a result. According to the American Lung Association, cigarette smoking leads to 87% of lung cancers, emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Healthcare and lost productivity costs of $97.2 billion dollars per years arise from smoking related illnesses. Cigarettes contain over 19 known cancer-causing chemicals in addition to nicotine.