Just 1 Minute Of Intense Exercise Sees Health Benefits
Martin Gibala,a professor of kinesiology at McMaster University, and his team found that a single minute of very intense exercise within a 10-minute session produces health benefits similar to those from 50 minutes of moderate-intensity continuous exercise. The findings were published in the journal PLOS ONE.
WHAT? Well, it seems that brief bursts of intense exercise are incredibly effective and time-efficient workout strategy.
Gibala and his team compared sprint interval training (SIT)– my better half has been singing the praises of interval training for a long time– to moderate-intensity continuous training (MICT). They looked at key health indicators like insulin sensitivity (a measure of how the body regulates blood sugar) and cardiorespiratory fitness and what they found was that after the study participants trained for 12 weeks, their results were remarkably similar.
From the Kurzweil article:
“In the experiment, a total of 27 sedentary men were recruited and assigned to perform three weekly sessions of either intense or moderate training for 12 weeks, or to a control group that did not exercise.
The ”sprint interval training” (SIT) protocol in the experiment involved three intermittent 20-second “all-out” cycle sprints interspersed with two minutes of continuous low-intensity exercise for recovery. MICT (the current exercise guideline) involves 45 minutes of continuous cycling at ~70% maximal heart rate. Both protocols involve a two-minute warm-up and three-minute cool-down.”
Even though those doing the MICT protocol worked out five times as much, the researchers found a similar 19% improvement in cardiorespiratory fitness, which they determined by peak oxygen uptake (VO2 peak).
People often say they don’t have “time” for the gym but this study seems to show that time should no longer be an impediment. An interval-based approach can be more efficient and still give you the health benefits you need, in far less time. Now, this isn’t to say you should only work out for 1 minute a day, in order to have optimum health, but that the need to spend hours in the gym is an unnecessary and antiquated idea.
For more info on how to start an interval program, you can watch this video below from my better half.
If you don’t have time for the video, here are some simple instructions:
How to Do Peak Fitness Exercises
One of the major advantages of Peak Fitness exercises that I’m sure most of you will love is that it can be done in just 20 minutes. Take note that in those 20 minutes, 75 percent will be spent on warming up, recovering, or cooling down – this means you’re working out intensely only for four minutes. That’s pretty amazing, considering the many profound benefits that you can get in that short span of time.
The key to performing Sprint 8 exercises properly is to raise your heart rate up to your anaerobic threshold. Keep pushing at maximum effort for 20 to 30 seconds, and then rest for 90 seconds.
Here’s a summary of what a typical Peak Fitness routine might look like:
- Warm up for three minutes.
- Exercise as hard and fast as you can for 30 seconds. To know that you’re achieving the proper intensity, you should feel as if you couldn’t possibly go on another few seconds. By the end of this 30-second period, you should reach these markers:
- You will be in oxygen debt, and will have difficulty breathing.
- You will begin to sweat profusely. Typically, this occurs in the second or third repetition, unless you have a thyroid issue and don’t sweat much normally.
- There will be a rise in your body temperature.
- You will feel a muscle “burn” as your lactic acid increases.
- Recover for 90 seconds.
- Repeat the high-intensity exercise and recovery seven more times.
If you’re out of shape, start with just two or three repetitions, and work your way up to eight – this is where the magic really starts to happen. Always be mindful of your current fitness level, so you will not overdo the exercise when you first start out.