The Truth About Exercise

I recently watched Michael Mosley's program "The Truth About Exercise" and was intrigued to find that exercise is not unlike food - there is no one exercise or diet that is going to fix obesity. In fact, we all respond individually to the foods we consume and the exercise we perform. The bottom line is the amount and type of exercise needs to be tailored to the individual.

The program revealed through genetic testing that 20% of the population are "non-responsders" when it comes to aerobic fitness (such as running, walking, swimming and cycling) and therefore will not respond to aerobic activity no matter how many hours spent pounding the pavement, their fitness will more or less stay the same.

So what's the answer then when it comes to exercise? I believe it is a combo of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) and just moving more period. Our lives have become too sedentary and this needs to change.

So explain HIIT training I here you say .. well it's exercise performed at maximal effort for approximately 30 seconds with 1 to 5 minutes recovery time (lower intensity exercise - walking) and repeated 3 to 5 times. Studies reveal this type of training is more effective at breaking down fat and burning more energy when compared to moderate intensity exercise performed over a longer time period. And all it takes is three HIIT sessions per week. This is music to most peoples ears that you can achieve significant health results by exercising less. It is advisable before embarking on any exercise routine you get the all clear from your medical practitioner.

It's no secrete that we lead sedentary lives, just look at the jobs we perform to the couch time we clock up. We need to increase our NEAT (Non-exercise activity time) or just simply our inactivity. Being active switches on genes which increase our bodies ability to break down fat and increase our metabolism. There should never be an hour that you are just sitting. Being sedentary as many office workers are and then hitting the gym for an hour just doesn't cut it. So how can you move more throughout our day . . .

  • Take the stairs
  • Walk up the escalator
  • Get off one tram/train stop earlier
  • Park your car further away from the office or shops
  • Walk to the water cooler to refill your glass instead of having a jug at your desk
  • Every 20 minutes get up from your chair and pump out 20 squats or lunges
  • While the kettles boiling jog on the spot
  • Cycle to work instead of catching public transport, it's also cheaper
  • Start a lunch time walkers group at the office
  • Walk to and from work
  • Walk to the grocery store - you'll buy less and move more!

So how do you exercise?

Why not share what's worked for you

Video Link:  Watch "The Truth About Exercise" here