The Cumulative Effect of Activity
Many people are put off from starting an exercise routine because they are overwhelmed by the time commitment they feel is necessary. Fitness magazines, exercise experts, and everything on youtube preaches–
–30 minutes of cardio three times a week
–45 minutes of strength training twice a week
–150 minutes of exercise per week
Most of this well-intentioned advice is wrong. Nearly everyone can derive significant benefit from short bouts of fitness activity that are performed on a consistent basis. Walk for five minutes twice a day. A simple routine of two strengthening exercises will take no more than five minutes. Climb the stairs in your home three times once a day. Practice getting up and down of the floor. Stay consistent with a routine of short exercise bouts and you will be healthier and stay independent for a lifetime.
More research has demonstrated the beneficial effect of short exercise sessions interspersed throughout the day. Read the March 28, 2018, New York Times article by Gretchen Reynolds, Those 2-Minute Walk Breaks? They Add Up. View the article: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/28/well/move/walking-exercise-minutes-death-longevity.html
Mike O’Hara, PT, OCS, CSCS
The Wisdom of Frank
I met my friend Frank when I was 21 years old and working out at a local gym. Frank was sixty-eight years old and in great condition. He had been a professional boxer, army fitness instructor, and then a physical education teacher. Frank was an incredibly well read student of fitness and human performance. He was stronger, more agile, and fitter than most people in their twenties. Success leaves footprints, so I was eager to learn from a master.
Frank’s biggest lesson was that no matter how busy, over worked, and over scheduled you were, there was no excuse not to perform some type of exercise. The crucial component of lifelong fitness is consistency. You can slow down but never stop. Do something, even if it is only ten minutes–every day. As Frank traveled through his eighties, he performed twenty minute sessions of mobility work and some calisthenics on a daily basis.
A recent *article by Gretchen Reynolds in the New York Times reinforces this lesson. Older athletes that maintain the lifelong fitness habit have remarkable fitness assessment scores. Many have posted VO2 max tests that make researchers rethink the present expectations for testing standards.
*Age Like a Former Athlete, Gretchen Reynolds, New York Times, August 23, 2107.
View the NY Times Article here: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/23/well/move/age-like-a-former-athlete.html?_r=0
Michael S. O’Hara, PT, OCS, CSCS