Have you heard about the Hindu mythology where gods and demons churned the ocean with a serpent? This was done to find that magical elixir (amrita) which could give youth and immortality. In other cultures too, people have toiled to find the elixir over the years. People have always desired and sought eternal youth throughout the history of humankind. We can earn a lot of material wealth but health and youth are always elusive even to the rich.
Studies have found that ageing can be delayed and it is not necessary to churn the ocean. In a recent study conducted by Mayo Clinic (http://newsnetwork.mayoclinic.org/discussion/mayo-clinic-discovers-high-intensity-aerobic-training-can-reverse-aging-processes-in-adults/), researchers have found that high intensity training can slow down ageing. Among all exercise types, HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) seems to provide the most benefits.
What is HIIT?
HIIT is an exercise type where intense quick bursts of activity are alternated with slower recovery intervals. Sprinting has been a common intense activity but it could be other exercises too.
What are the benefits?
HIIT was already popular for its effective fat burning and providing lean muscle. This study has proved that it arrests mitochondrial content and function in older adults. It improved the protein synthesis, which reduces the effect of ageing. Combining it with a few days of resistance training will improve the muscle mass.
Should you switch to HIIT?
HIIT has been proven as one of the best forms of exercises. However keep in mind the below points before jumping into a HIIT regimen immediately:
- If you have not exercised much, then start with moderate exercises and increase the intensity gradually.
- Older adults need to be cautious and could consider getting a supervised training. If not done properly, intense exercises could result in a muscle pull or hurt the joints.
It is time to take exercise more seriously and get that young look.