Whenever you experience heavy breathing during workouts, it is a sign that your body is trying to compensate because you are working it hard. Basically, your body is attempting to deliver increased amounts of oxygen to all of your cells.
Most of the time, heavy breathing during workouts is not really a cause for concern, but you should learn how to manage it nonetheless. Check out the tips below.
Breathing in Through the Nose vs. the Mouth
You may have heard some experts say that it is better to breathe in through the nose during exercise. This is because you could help warm the air as you inhale it into your lungs, so it is beneficial especially when you are working out in colder conditions. Plus, it can help to reduce your intake of allergens from the environment, and it could even help keep you calmer. But if you find that breathing through your nose is too difficult because you are starting to breathe more heavily, you should certainly incorporate some mouth breathing into your routine, rather than needlessly force yourself to continue straining to breathe in and out of the nose.
Know When to Inhale and Exhale
When you are doing yoga, the goal is to keep the inhales an equal length to the exhales. When you are doing cardio, you want to breathe steadily but you don’t necessarily have to match the movements to the breath. And when you are strength training, focus on exhaling on the exertion and inhaling as you move to the starting position. So, for example, exhale during a bicep curl and inhale as you bring the weight back down.
Take a Step Back
If you are breathing heavily during your workouts, it might be time to take a step back. For example, if you are pushing yourself hard on a stationary bike, you might want to slow your pace for a few minutes before picking back up again, and the same goes for running on a treadmill. And if you find yourself holding your breath, such as during a tough yoga pose, it is also an indication that you are overdoing it and need to slow things down.
By understanding how to better manage heavy breathing during workouts, you can prevent pushing your body too far past its limits, and you can also recognize serious respiratory problems and stop before you do any harm to your own body. Keep the tips above in mind the next time you’re working out to ensure you have a safe experience.