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What are some effects of smoking on physical fitness?

Most people focus more on the long-term effects and consequences of smoking like heart disease and cancer; however, many health consequences can occur quite rapidly, especially with how it may affect physical fitness. The impact on the lungs is undeniable. Chronic cough, increased phlegm production, and bronchitis can impair and limit one's ability to stay fit and perform. One study showed that smoking hurt young people's fitness in terms of both performance and endurance, even in those trained in competitive running. It has also been shown that the heart rate of smokers is two to three beats faster per minute than that of non-smokers; so when exercising, a smoker's heart must work much harder than that of the non-smoker.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.