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The ideal fitness regimen…

I enjoy reading and testing the latest training concepts and working with elite coaches & athletes and sharing that information.  Here is a summary of an article, I recently read in TIME magazine; YOUR BODY…The science of keeping it healthy

Ideal Exercises

There is no such thing as one perfect workout.  But if you add in elements of four specific types of training, you will get pretty close.

Here are the 4 cornerstones that make up the ideal fitness regimen…

 1. Cardiovascular exercise

Just 3 things matter to your heart: frequency, intensity and time.

Try these with your favorite activities:

High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) requires that you combine short bursts of high-intensity exercise with longer periods at low intensity.  15,30, 60 seconds at maximum effort alternating with roughly twice as much time (30,60, 120 seconds) at low intensity. HIIT training is 1:2 work to rest ratio Ensure you do a warm up and warm down.

There is also Sprint Interval Training (SIT) a more aggressive approach that involves 30, 60, 120 seconds of maximum effort alternating with roughly four times as much (120, 240,480 seconds) at low intensity. SIT training is 1:4 work to rest ratio. Ensure you do a warm up and warm down.

Note: there are numerous types of intervals; these are just two to try with new terminology.

2. Resistance Training

Resistance training is basically any exercise that forces your muscles to contract under some form of resistance. That resistance can come from almost anyplace: dumbbells, barbells, exercise machines, stretch cords, an old car tire or your own body weight.

8-12 repetitions with 2-4 sets (rest 2-3 minutes between sets)

Varity is key.

3. Flexibility

Stretch only to the point of tightness or slight discomfort (never pain), hold for 10-30 seconds, repeat each stretch 2-4 times. (This is static stretching)  I recommend doing this type of stretching before bed not before exercise. Yoga is great for flexibility. Before exercise do dynamic stretching, ie arm swings, legs swings and others to increase range of motion but do not hold stretches before exercising.

4. Rest

Rest is a critical part of all training programs. Talk to your coach or research the latest information about recovery times for the type of training you are doing.