The Truth About Exercise

The premier of The Truth About Exercise aired this week.

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This is the second special of Michael Mosley’s three-part series on personal health experiments on PBS.  Check out my post on his first special Eat, Fast, and Live Longer.

It is obvious, I love exercising! Running, biking, hiking, lifting, stepping, weight lifting, yoga bending, you name it, I enjoy it.  But there are some of us who just do not like to exercise, maybe it is the sweat, discomfort, or soreness that comes along with it.  In this documentary, Michael experiments we other means of reaping the benefits of exercise without actually joining a gym or setting out for a long run.

So what is the truth about exercise? Micheal points out the following from his experiments.

  • Most people exercise to lose weight but the average person does not burn enough calories through exercise alone to burn off the extra pounds. For successful weight loss focus more on eating habits.
  • Everyday movements can amount to more health improvements than just a typical workout session. The concept of NEAT (Exercise Activity Thermogenesis) shows that basic movement allows our body to process efficiently.  There should never be an hour that you remain seated. When seated your body idles, gunk builds up, blood sugar levels rise and blood fats elevates. Get up and move, often!
  • A fast intensive exercise for only 20 seconds has proven to have a lot of health benefit. Performing HIIT (high intensity interval training) will help improve insulin sensitivity. Try adding quick bursts of energy to your day, it only takes a few seconds.

In summary, exercise is known to have great benefits although some of those benefits can be obtained without joining a sweaty gym or going on a boring run. If exercise is not your thing, you can still see an improvement in health by just staying active throughout the day & incorporating small bursts of energy throughout the week. Who knew it could be so easy?

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