Can we work out less and be more healthier?
When it comes to exercising, most people keep thinking “how little can i work out and still get the most out of it?”
Well for those who think this way , there may be some good news. According to a new study by National Institue of Health, doing as little as one minute or two minutes of very rigorous exercise can have the same benefit of doing 30-45 mins of slow to moderate exercise.
Now that does not mean, you can just run hard for one minute and get away with it! What the study goes on to say is that once you “warm up” for twenty minutes, go hard for 60-120 seconds and then cool down for ten minutes ! In my mind that’s thirty minutes of exercise! And you still have to make sure your diet is clean, you eat in moderation, get enough sleep (NIH recommends 8 hours)
NIH Group Study
One of the things the study does recommend is to be active in your job. They say that professionals in service industries with jobs like tree service removal arborists or law enforcement agencies are the most active.
Being a health activist and blogger, I have been writing for a long time on the benefits of HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). Though most professional athletes and sports people use HIIT to improve speed, power and endurance, HIIT is largely a neglected type of workout to the common man. If you really understand HIIT, its basically doing any movement in short bursts of time, followed by longer periods of moderate movement. So it could be jog for 2 mins, and sprint hard for 30 sec or go on your elliptical or stair climber for 2 mins slow and then hard for 30 sec or 4 sec (and by hard I mean at your max effort – think blood spilling , throwing up intensity!!)
The NIH study divided people into three groups. One group was asked to exercise normally like they usually do (so moderate jogging for 30 mins). One group was asked to just sprint hard for 1 min every day. And the third group was asked to perform high intensity exercises (HIIT).
After 30 days of observing them, it was found that the group which performed High Intensity Interval Training out-performed all other groups. They lost more weight, they seemed to have put on more muscle, their cholesterol and blood sugar was lower than others. And surprisingly the members of this group also mentioned they were much happier and in love with their life after having performed HIIT exercises for thurty days!
The conclusion is the NIH report was true – but only if you performed HIIT workouts (and not just exercise for 1 min)! You can read about the NIH study here.