Smoking and excercise seem to be two irrelative or even opposite words as smoking have a bad impact on your fitness and health. That's what you discover after 10 minutes of running or playing sports, you feel shortness of breath and air seems to be shy to enter your lungs, your heart isn't like a few years ago, you feel older.
Well, first let's agree on something: Excercise is of great value and importance to improve your health no matter if you are a smoker or non-smoker. It's obvious that non-smokers will have great benifits of excercise. It's good for your shape, your health, it strngthens your muscles, your immunity and your mood.
Cigarette smoke contains three substances : Nicotine, Carbon monoxide (CO) and Tar. Simply, smoking decreases the oxygen reaching your tissues, your muscles and your body. CO is responsible for this action as it binds to haemoglobin and limit it's Oxygen binding capacity, thus depriving your tissues (and your heart) from oxygen.
Your heart tries to work harder to compensate the oxygen deficiency (remember that your heart itself isn't receiving enough oxygen, so it's a huge load on it).Smoking also stiffens and clogs your blood vessels, thus increasing the risk of atherosclerosis in younger age. Nicotine also raises your blood pressure and increases your heart rate too, making things worse! And it's also responsible for the habituation and psychic dependence. While tar contributes to cancer occurance.
Excercise (for smokers and non) will strengthen your muscles (including the heart, which is a muscle!). It improves your respiration and oxygen delivery to the tissues.
Excercise will also lower your blood pressure and lower your average heart rate (during rest) and decreases bad cholesterol in the blood protecting you from astherosclerosis, angina, infarction and coronary heart diseases. Excercise together with healthy food will also make your blood vessels stronger and protect you from a big list of cardiovascular diseases.
So, for smokers, excercise strengthens your heart so it can withstand the serious effect of smoking on it for a longer period. It doesn't cancel the effect of smoking and it can't. But it improves the condition of your heart, your cardiovascular system and your body in general, providing a more powerful enemy for smoking.
The most important part is the decision to start excercise, then to continue excercising. Doctors recommend 30 minutes of practice 3 times weekly. Walking, running, swimming, soccer playing tennis or any other type of working out will be good for you according to your age and health status. Start with what's easiest to you and by time you can increase the duration and the violence of excercise later on.