You have probably heard of or read about HIIT, high intensity interval training, and how you can get excellent fitness benefits in a fraction of the time of conventional aerobic exercise. For most of us, who find spending hours in the gym impossible, it’s a wonderful option. But it has even more profound benefits than just improving fitness, helping with weight loss and saving time! Some of those include greater fat loss than regular exercise, improved cardiovascular health by increasing VO2 max (the maximum amount of oxygen you can take in while exercising) and reducing insulin resistance.
I recommend trying HIIT and including it in your exercise regimen in Today’s the Day.
One of the primary contributors to virtually all chronic degenerative disease, like cancer, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis and Alzheimer’s is mitochondrial dysfunction, which research suggests half of people under the age of 40 have! So what are mitochondria and why is this so important to health?
According to Live Science, “mitochondria are specialized structures unique to the cells of animals, plants and fungi. They serve as batteries, powering various functions of the cell and the organism as a whole.”
We each have over 1 quadrillion mitochondria, which comprise about 10% of our total body mass. They are responsible for production of energy in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). The more mitochondria you have and the healthier they are, the more energy your body can generate and the lower your risk of chronic disease.
Studies also show HIIT is very effective for boosting mitochondria and improving their function, particularly in older people. This article details a 12-week Mayo Clinic study of 72 sedentary people aged either 30 or younger or 64 and over. The results showed that those engaging in HIIT not only had improved muscle mass, strength and endurance, biological aging was also positively impacted, particularly in the older participants.
You can perform HIIT at any age and still reap major benefits, and quickly. The older you are the lower your maximum heart rate will be, and the more gradually you will want to increase your repetitions. You can still get benefits from working out at a slightly lower intensity; you simply increase the time you work out to make up for it. Always use wisdom and listen to your body.
Have you tried HIIT? If not, would you consider making it part of your exercise routine?
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