Smoking has been shown to increase the risk of serious health problems. Some of these health risks include cancer, and serious diseases. For this reason, it’s not a surprising piece of information that smoking can also have its bad effects on athletic performance.
Here are the main 4 effects smoking has:
1- Lack of Blood Oxygen
When one exercises, the heart rate increases in order to meet blood oxygen demands of the muscles. Cigarettes contain carbon monoxide, which becomes associated to the blood hemoglobin more effectively than oxygen itself, which means that your muscles are getting Carbon monoxide, not the oxygen that they require during exercise. This makes your heart work even harder.
2- Narrowed Blood Vessels
The narrower blood vessels smoking causes, makes the process of pumping blood throughout your body slower and more difficult when doing your exercises. And puts an extra pressure on your heart every time it pumps, because it has to work harder to provide your body with the blood oxygen it needs to function.
3- Increased Resting Heart Rate
Your resting heart rate is how many beats per minute your heart makes when not being active. Smoking increases those beats because of the extra work your heart has to do. What this means is that when you perform your exercises, your heart rate could possibly rise to dangerous levels in order to endure the physical demands of your exercising body.
4- Airway Resistance
Airway resistance means the rate at which air enters and exits your lungs. One inhalation of a cigarette can increase this resistance by up to three times. Also reduced air capacity will increase airway resistance, which will cause more difficulty in producing the oxygen your body needs while doing your exercises.