Cardiac Hypertrophy - The heart increases in size and volume. The wall of the left ventricle gets thicker which can increase the force of contraction.
Stroke volume - at rest stoke volume has been shown to be significantly higher after an aerobic training programme. The heart can therefore pump more blood per minute, increasing cardiac output during maximal levels of exercise. Blood flow increases as a consequence of an increase in size and number of blood vessels. This allows for a more efficient delivery of oxygen and nutrients.
Cardiac output – During exercise cardiac output increases as a result of the increase in heart rate and stroke volume. Stroke volume doses not increase significantly beyond lower intensity work rates so the increase in cardiac output at higher level is achieved through increases in heart rate. As stroke volume increases as result of training this will give a subsequent increase in the cardiac output.
Resting heart rate – this decreases after aerobic endurance training as a result of the increased resting stroke volume the heart does not have to beat as fast at rest.
Capillarisation - long term exercise can lead to the development of the capillary network to a part of the body. Aerobic exercise can increase the number of capillaries. As a result of this blood flow to the muscle will increase which will give a more efficient delivery of oxygen and nutrients.
Increase in blood volume – blood volume represents the amount of blood circulating in the body and varies from person to person and can increase as a result of training. Capillarisation is the cause of the increase.
Resting blood pressure – Exercise increases blood pressure during the activity but it returns to normal afterwards. The quicker it does this the more aerobically fit you are likely to be. Research suggests that regular exercise can decrease resting blood pressure however this is only in hypertensive people.
Decreased recovery time - heart rate recovery is a measure of how much your rate falls during the first minute after exercise. The fitter you are the quicker the heart rate will return to normal.
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