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Can too much exercise cause a stroke?

By Michelle Roberts

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So should we now leave high-intensity training to only the youngest and fittest people?

The 53-year-old said he had, to his detriment, believed the newspapers… that we must take very, very intensive exercise in short bursts for good health.

People of all ages can have a stroke, although they occur most commonly in people who are older.

More than 150,000 people in the UK have a stroke each year and a quarter of them are under 65.

Most of the time there will be underlying health problems like having high blood pressure.

And there are simple lifestyle changes that you can make to reduce your risk of stroke.

These include keeping fit by doing regular exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, refraining from smoking and making sure you don’t drink too much alcohol.

man rowing Experts advise getting checked over by a GP before embarking on a new exercise regime

Doctors say that regular exercise can halve your risk of stroke.

About 30 minutes of activity five days a week is enough. And you do not have to do it all in one go – it is just as effective to exercise a few times a day in 10, 15 or 20-minute sessions.

But in terms of intensity, erring on the side of caution might be best.

Know your limits

Advocates of high-intensity interval training say doing a few short bursts of exercise each week – four 30-second sprints on an exercise bike, for example – is a good way to keep fit.

The idea is that pushing your body to its limit gives you a better workout.

Studies suggest that high-intensity interval training causes significant changes in a number of important health parameters, and more so than hours of conventional exercise.

It can boost aerobic fitness, as well as viagra shop improve how the body’s metabolic processes.

BBC presenter Dr Michael Mosley gave it a try himself and found some benefits.

But he does point out that high-intensity training will not suit everyone.

And, like any new exercise regime, if you have a pre-existing medical condition you should consult your doctor before trying it.