Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The Complete Fitness Program

Partrick on a LinkedIn forum wrote:

'Cardio is steady state for prolonged periods of time, which plenty of research shows little benefit and possible negative health risk in the long run.'

Obviously he hasn't heard of Ron Clarke or Robert De Castella?

How do you think these people trained. I can tell you one thing, they didn't become world record holders by doing a few interval sprints. It took years of steady running.

Then he went on to write about: '...possible negative health risk.'

I would have thought that the risks associated with regular aerobic fitness activity greatly outweigh the risks associated with not doing any at all. In fact I'm not aware of any risks - apart from overuse injuries from running, which you can avoid by doing other things

At the moment there's a lot of 'smart Alec' research going on about short, sharp interval training. These people are completely out of touch with the real world of aerobic fitness as depicted by both regular, run-of-the-mill joggers and elite athletes.

In the 1950's and 60's there were fierce debates in elite athlete circles as to the benefit of sustained running and interval training. In the end it came down to a mix of both.

A lot of these researchers either have short memories or are just too young to know what's gone on in the past. A lot of them exist in a laboratory wearing a white coat.

The people I see who are into their 40's and beyond in good shape are people who've been jogging regularly for years. Some of them are people who've been working out in the gym on the treadmill, the bike, the stepper or the climber for years. Some of them ride a bike outside or swim. The results speak for themselves despite what recent research may show.

The formula is:

*  20 minutes is good

*  30 minutes is better

*  40 minutes is best.

*  4 times a week is good

*  5 times is better

*  six times is best

For a 40 year old

*  heart rate of 120 is good

*  130 is better

*  140 is best

Do that year in and year out and you'll maintain a good enough level of aerobic fitness. it's the foundation of metabolic health. It's simple. It's cheap. It's uncomplicated.

On top of that you need a decent three times a week strength training program and a flexibility training program.

The three main factors of fitness are

-  aerobic fitness
-  strength
-  flexibility.

Fitness practitioners are short changing people if they don't encourage them to do all three on a regular and systematic basis.

In the meantime stay tuned, highly tuned.



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