Ditch The Treadmill

Women (and men) who run slow laps on treadmills for hours on end, or who rack up languid miles running SWPLthons, are in for a rude surprise: your efforts aren’t amounting to much. Advocates for the paleolithic lifestyle got another boost from science recently, in a study which found that short, intense bursts of exercise are more beneficial than long, moderately intense exercise for your heart health.

Short, intense bursts of exercise could be better for our health than longer intervals.

Spending 2 minutes 30 seconds exercising at a high level of intensity, could be better at protecting the body against risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD) than longer sessions of less intense exercise, claimed experts at the British Science Festival today.

The ability of the body to deal with fat following a high-fat meal is a marker for the likelihood that a person will develop CVD in the future. The faster the body is able to get rid of the fat in the blood following a high-fat meal, the less at risk that person is of developing CVD – for example atherosclerosis, which is the build up of fat within the blood vessels.

A study led by Dr Stuart Gray, from the University of Aberdeen’s Musculoskeletal Research Programme asked participants to undertake 2.5 minutes of high-intensity exercise – 5 x 30 second sprints exerting themselves to their maximum ability with 4 minutes of rest between each sprint – before eating a high-fat meal.

Findings of the study—published in Clinical Science—showed the fat content in the blood of these participants after that meal was reduced by 33% compared to if they had not undertaken any exercise.

The fat content in the blood is only reduced by 11% if a moderate intensity exercise session – 30 minutes of brisk walking – is undertaken before the same meal is eaten.

Paleo gurus have been saying for quite a while that wind sprints and heavy low rep deadlifts >>>>> jogging for miles and high rep pink dumbbells, for both maximizing heart health and muscle tone. And now we have some lab proof. On a personal note, I feel a lot stronger and alive when I do a set of sprints, complete with hard turns at the 40 yard mark, than I do running five miles at a slower pace. I also like to clean and jerk fat chicks. Not a euphemism.

On another personal note, it gives me pleasure to sneer at SWPL chicks and emaciated hipsters running hither and tither to their poofy froo froo pillow fight aerobicizer classes and ventkatamaran yogurt meditations. Classes, seminars, socials, oh my! Must feel busy before I die!

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