Thursday, March 31, 2016

Begin to exercise without overdoing it....

Today's Post:  Thursday, 3-31-2016

The value of regular exercise is so high that if you start to do it successfully, overdoing it is usually a temporary problem.

That said, overdoing it can prevent you from starting successfully.

You are likely doing it to improve your health or fitness or strength.  Overdoing it can delay those benefits.

The best news is that deliberately starting at a level which is easy and doable and short has two huge benefits:

a) By giving yourself permission to start at a level that is this easy to do, you KNOW you can do it.  So you focus ONLY and doing it at all at the time you set for it.

Studies find that people can do this and do so. And it is easy enough they follow up next time too.

Why is that so important?

ONLY the people who get that far become regular exercisers. 

The people who think of it as too hard or feel it is when they do it either never start or don’t continue.

b) Starting at a level that is this easy totally prevents overdoing it!

So, this post has two parts:

1.  How do you avoid overdoing it but still start well and make progress quickly & safely?

2.  How can you help your body thrive with fast progress instead of giving you overdoing it messages and problems?


Monday this week, Medical News Today had a study finding that overdoing it as a beginning exerciser can do more harm than good.

The data found that:

Short, high intensity cardio can cause harm if not built up to and supported well

1.  Turns out that beginners need to be careful to start with a bit shorter duration before rests and use a bit less speed or intensity than they are able to do.

2.  This also suggests that taking antioxidants and eating foods high in them is a valuable protection for those new to higher intensity cardio.

3.  AND this also suggests that taking ubiquinol and PQQ can also be needed to minimize this damage to your mitochondria or help reverse it.

Here’s the relevant quotes:

“All-out sprints may do more harm than good     March 28, 2016   written by  Yvette Brazier  

An active lifestyle may be a healthy lifestyle, but some more extreme forms of workout are best left to those who are already fit, according to new research in the journal of The Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) Journal.

Whether it is the desire for a "super-lean body" or the lure of burning calories quickly - some researchers have claimed that a person "can burn an extra 200 calories per day by putting in only 2.5 minutes of work" - high-intensity "sprint training" has been gaining popularity at gyms.

Intense exercise training can stimulate the growth of mitochondria and increase the body's capacity to use oxygen, enhancing cardiovascular fitness and strength and keeping cardiovascular disease and obesity at bay.

However, working out without short-term preparation, such as warming up, or long-term preparation, such as building up intensity over time, can cause damage to the body.

Intense workouts damage muscles, reduce mitochondrial functionality

Canadian and European researchers, led by Robert Boushel, director of the University of British Columbia's School of Kinesiology in Canada, analyzed tissue samples from 12 male volunteers in Sweden.

All the participants were healthy but described themselves as either untrained or only moderately active.

The men took part in high-intensity training over a 2-week period. The exercise regimen involved repeated 30-second all-out sprints, followed by rest periods.

The researchers observed signs of stress in the muscle tissues of the participants after carrying out ultra-intense leg and arm cycling exercises.

Tests showed that their mitochondria, the "powerhouse of cells," were only functioning at half their capacity after training, reducing their ability to consume oxygen and to defend against damage from free radicals.

Free radicals are molecules that can modify DNA and cause harm to healthy cells. High levels of free radicals appear to be a risk factor for a range of medical conditions, including premature aging, organ damage and cancer.

Boushel says the findings raise questions about what constitutes appropriate dosage and intensity of exercise for the average individual. He urges caution when encouraging the general population to participate in sprint training. 

Boushel explains that experienced and well-trained athletes accumulate antioxidant enzymes in their bodies, and these offer protection against free radicals. 

For beginners, however, he recommends starting slowly and building up intensity over time. Exercise should also take place under the eye of a trained professional or kinesiologist.

He warns:

"If you're new to going to the gym, participating in high-intensity sprint classes may increase your performance but might not be healthy for you."

The potential long-term adverse effects of high-intensity sprint training are unknown, but ongoing studies are looking at different levels of exercise and evaluating quantities and intensity of training against different biomarkers for health.”

Here’s the link to the story:

All-out sprints may do more harm than good
Intense exercise training may help you boost your cardiovascular health and lose calories, but starting from scratch can lead to a buildup of unhealthy levels of free radicals. 

1.  How do you avoid overdoing it but still start well and make progress quickly & safely?

The secret is to start super easy; make progress slowly; AND, at first, as soon as you begin to feel short of breath stop to rest or slow down enough to catch your breath before speeding up again.

This is the other value of this kind of interval or variable cardio besides its time efficiency.

Other studies have found that long duration high intensity cardio that gives your heart no breaks actually causes heart damage because your heart gets no time off to recover.

Yet other studies have found that this is much worse in men than women.
This new study shows that beginners need to take it easier at first to get that protection.

What about the Indians of Mexico that run a hundred miles with no problems? 

I read the answer.  They learn it and often do it as part of a game that ensures they run faster and then stop and keep varying between the two as they run.  They perhaps do become fit enough to run those distances at a fast pace without a  break with safety.  But they learn it and get fit with a kind of moving variable cardio and often ONLY run that way.  They DO give their hearts the breaks they need to avoid damage!

Once you have done an exercise long enough making easy upgrades you begin to get used to the faster portions and the rests or slower portions.

At that point going gradually faster during the fast parts and even faster during the slow parts or resting a bit less between faster parts is safe.

By doing it gradually over weeks of exercising you develop an intuitive feel for it that protects you.

The other thing that you learn to do is to adjust to how your body is doing on a given day.

Sometimes you feel unusually good and lifting your heavy weights in slow rep strength training or going fast in your interval or variable cardio feels easier than usual.  It feels easier and stays easier longer than usual.  This enables you to make progress!

Sometimes when you are tired, particularly mentally tired, but you start your exercises anyway, as soon as you begin you get an astonishing surprise because lifting your heavy weights in slow rep strength training or going fast in your interval or variable cardio feels easier than usual.  It feels easier and stays easier longer than usual.  This enables you to make progress!

I’ve had days when I felt like I needed a crew of people to carry me to my exercises on a stretcher and then had that experience.

But other times whether you feel good psychologically at first or not, you get the reverse experience, your muscles feel tired and unrecovered or the exercises feel harder than usual or it’s harder to go fast than usual or you need to stop and slow down or rest sooner.

I’ve found to make overall progress and keep exercising regularly it helps to simply accept you are having a down day and cut yourself some slack that day.

This new research shows that doing this also protects your body when you do that.

For new exercisers, particularly men, it can be easy to overdo it at first.

So, DO NOT do that!  Force yourself to make progress more slowly than you’d like.

After several weeks of making progress every week by starting out that easy is one of the payoffs you get by taking it slow at first.  It feels great!

And, if you did overdo it, do this double.

Force yourself to exercise anyway even if you feel like a wreck.  BUT cut yourself a LOT of slack too!  Use less weight or do fewer reps or both and stop early if feels a bit too hard. Or speed up less on your faster cardio sections or shorten them or both.

2.  How can you help your body thrive with fast progress instead of giving you overdoing it messages and problems?

Do things that cause your body to become harder to damage; and do things that enable it to recover from effort faster and easier.

a) Note that one of the problems the new research found was that the oxidizing caused by overdoing it was one of the ways overdoing it caused problems.

But research found long ago that exercisers who got abundant antioxidants didn’t get the colds from hard exercise that those who got very few antioxidants did.

So, if you overdo it or become advanced enough to train hard in most sessions, got lots of antioxidants!

Eat lots of organic vegetables which have major antioxidants and hundreds of cofactors making them extra effective.  Eat organic fruits like blueberries that are super high in anti-oxidants.

Take at least 10,000 iu a day of vitamin D3; AND do NOT take NSAID over the counter drugs if you get sore.  One study found that taking the D3 reduced soreness by speeding healing while those taking NSAID’s didn’t improve.  Plus we’ve long known that taking NSAID’s increases your risk of heart disease.  So, if protecting your  heart is one reason you are exercising, take NSAID’s off your list of things to buy and use!

Take 1,000 to 3,000 mg a day of vitamin C in 500 mg capsule over each day.

If you want to do more and can, natural vitamin E and NAC and alpha lipoic acid also work well as antioxidants.

b)  As I’ve posted before, getting enough health OK protein for your body to repair and build back better after your exercise is also essential.

The Perfect Workout found research that they confirmed that getting 1.5 grams of protein per kilogram of bodyweight was the minimum needed.  (A Kilogram is about 2.2 pounds.  So that’s about 2 thirds of a gram or protein per pound of bodyweight.)

And, the optimum that won’t be wasted bodybuilders and power lifters have found is one gram of protein for each pound of bodyweight.

The essential thing is that all your protein intake be from health OK sources.

Whey from grass fed cows is most effective.

Beef, Lamb, and Bison from totally and ONLY grass fed sources works if you can afford it and the cooking time needed.

But eggs from pasture fed chickens and canned sardines (which are all wild caught) and canned Alaskan Salmon which is wild caught and canned cooked lentils also work and cost far less!
(Water packed canned tuna is cost effective but so high in mercury it’s best not to use it or only once every other month.)

Raw nuts if you aren’t allergic you can buy in bulk also have protein AND all the antioxidants in the vitamin E complex plus valuable minerals if you aren’t allergic to tree nuts.

c)  And, if you can afford, them there are two supplements that improve your performance if you take them at least 15 minutes before exercise AND speed your recovery after your exercise too.

Creatine works and is modestly expensive.  It works as a powder and as capsules.  But the powder costs less per use and delivers more and goes to work faster.

D-Ribose also provides an energy kick and works too as a faster recovery supplement.  It costs more than creatine and also works best as a powder mixed into water you drink before you work out.

d) Get at least 6 to 7 hours of quality sleep each night!

e)  If you do vigorous exercise most days of every week and avoid overdoing it, your body makes NEW mitochondria so your muscles gradually get younger and can create and use more energy.

But to speed recovery, create antiaging effects in the rest of your body, and protect against overdoing it, taking the supplements Ubiquinol and PQQ also help.

Note this is also a direct preventive of harm to your mitochondria from overdoing it as a new exerciser!  

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