If you’re running for your health, stop! It’s counterproductive. Running is harmful to your joints, muscles and heart. It is not heart healthy. Long distance running such as marathons should be left to few athletes who consider it a sport although an unhealthy sport. The average male or female wanting to gain health and endurance should not use running as a means to obtain good health. When you compare the appearance of a sprint athlete and one who continuously runs marathons you’ll see a difference in body structure. I think you’ll admit the appearance of the sprint athlete is much more attractive than the thin, frail looking marathoner. If you’re running to lose weight it is also counterproductive and you’ll waste too much time for the little that you’ll gain in weight loss. The lean underweight runner or marathoner not only has lost fat but a very large percentage of muscle. Actually, the muscle is damaged as are the joints and heart. The real way to lose weight, stay lean, gain muscle, endurance and flexibility is to do interval training. Studies have been done with athletes doing endurance exercises for as much as one hour with such equipment as stationary bike, running and treadmills and have seen fewer results than athletes doing interval training for four minutes. Interval training is made up of an intense short period of exercise followed with rest. Read my article on my website at www.TerryTalksNutrition.com. Click on Terry’s Exercise Plan. The plan is called Short Burst Exercise and you will learn how you can gain muscle and lose weight. You will be well toned, and have more flexibility and strength.
The following studies compared short burst exercising to steady state training:
Izumi Tabata and his partners at the National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Tokyo, Japan, compared the effects of moderate-intensity endurance and high-intensity interval training on maximal aerobic capacity—the best indicator of cardiorespiratory endurance. They conducted a six week study with twogroups of randomly picked males.
Group 1 did one hour of steady state training five days a week. Group 2 did only 4 minutes of interval training five days a week. At the end of the six weeks, Group 1 had an increase in maximal aerobic capacity of 10% and Group 2 had an increase of 14%. Not only did the interval group have a 40% greater gain in aerobic capacity, they had an increase in strength of 28%, as opposed to the steady state group which had no gains in strength. And, all this with just four minutes of interval training a day.
Similar studies have confirmed that interval training produces higher gains in aerobic fitness, greater decreases in body fat, and gains in strength as opposed to the muscle wasting that occurs with much longer sessions of steady state training.
Dr. Angelo Tremblay and his colleagues at the Physical Activities Sciences Laboratory, in Quebec, Canada, tested the popular belief that low-intensity, long-duration exercise is the most effective program for losing fat. They compared the impact of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise and high-intensity interval training on fat loss.
Skinfold measurements revealed that the interval training group lost more body fat. Moreover, when they took into account the fact that the interval training used less energy during the workouts, the fat loss was 9 times more efficient in that program than in the aerobics program. In short, the interval training group got 9 times more fat-loss benefit for every calorie burned exercising. How can that be? Because, after taking muscle biopsies, measuring muscle enzyme activity, and lipid utilization in the post exercise state, they found that high-intensity intermittent exercise caused more calories and fat to be burned following the workout. In addition, they found that appetite is suppressed more after intense intervals. So there you have it: Interval strength training is superior to aerobic activity in burning fat, as well as building strength, speed, power, and even cardiovascular endurance. All this in far less time than tedious “cardio” sessions. To learn more, read YOU ARE YOUR OWN GYM BY MARK LAUREN WITH JOSHUA CLARK.
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