30 mins!

October 5, 2012 — 12 Comments

Good news has been traveling all over the interwebz lately….a study has shown that 30 minutes of aerobic exercise is just as good as 60 minutes of aerobic exercise!

That means you can get the same results in half the time. That’s twice as good. That’s 30 more minutes you get to sit around and suck at life. Just because the scale didn’t show any additional lost lbs doesn’t mean that extra 30 minutes shouldn’t be spent in the gym. You aren’t that busy. I don’t care who you are, you aren’t 30 minutes away from blowing up the space time continuum due to over scheduling. Go foam roll, hit some planks, and do some strength training for shit’s sake.

It irks me that the news reports of this study says “exercise” as though all exercise was the same. I will continue to say that the best type of exercise YOU can do is the type that YOU like, because otherwise you won’t do it. BUT…YOU should really start liking strength training. Sure, aerobic exercise will help remove fat, but it doesn’t do shit for muscle gain.  Muscle gain is more important, because it makes you useful. If you need help carrying out your groceries but you can run 10 miles, you suck. If you think a 20lb weight is “lifting weights” you suck. Even if you are skinny, if you aren’t at least a bit useful…you suck. And I am not saying get to near competitive power lifting numbers either…I have basic “not sucking” guidelines:

Men should be able to deadlift, lap and zercher squat 1.5x their bodyweight, do 8 legit pull-ups, and 20 legit pushups in order to NOT SUCK.

Women should be able to DL, lap and zercher squat their own bodyweight, do 2 legit pull-ups, and 10 legit pushups in order to NOT SUCK.

That’s not being sexist, men are inherently stronger in the weight room. So settle down.

Sorry there isn’t a plan or more info here, but my twitter feed just keeps having more experts repost this article like its good news. It’s not. It will continue to give people excuses to do less. Less is not more. 

12 responses to 30 mins!

  1. 

    People are always looking for the minimum effective dose. Minimum effort = minimum results.

    • 

      Minimum effective dose DOES NOT EQUAL minimum effort!! Most times it takes a shit-load of effort and focus to obtain/determine the (minimum) EFFECTIVE dose.. note the inclusion of the word ‘EFFECTIVE’…

  2. 

    Sure, strength is super important, but aerobic endurance is also pretty useful. We forget that running (or quickly walking) ten miles is no longer commonly viewed as ‘useful’ only because we have labor saving devices called cars. In any case, being able to run ten miles seems like a decent additional standard for not sucking.

    • 

      I agree, and currently I suck because I couldn’t go ten miles due to the knee injury i have. but generally speaking, more useful day to day is having strength…it makes you more resilient, and you look better in a V neck.

    • 

      I think a 5k is a reasonable and good addition. 10miles is longer than anything that I’ve ever heard of anyone ever having to actually run. Even if zombies take over, we would never need to run that far. 5k, i could see that.

  3. 

    I strength train twice a week and according to your guidlelines I SUCK. At 155 pounds, I can leg press 450, but 10 pullups will never happen. You really ought to make allowances for us 70+ folks.

  4. 

    Clifton, I’m glad to hear your rough idea as to what constitutes reasonable fitness. I’ve been thinking about that lately. Here’s another benchmark that I find helpful: the US Army Physical Fitness Test given every six months to active duty soldiers. It involves push-ups, sit-ups, and a timed two-mile run. Find the requirements here: http://usmilitary.about.com/od/army/a/afpt.htm

    -Steve

    • 

      Agreed. And two miles is a PERFECT mileage. Any longer and it’s very likely never gonna happen. Situps is a nice easy measurable thing, but they might be getting rid of that test soon as that amount of repeated flexion in practicing for that sit-up test MAY be hurting soldiers and others

  5. 

    I would argue that any calculation of minimum effective dose would depend on your goals. Evan suggests that running 10 miles be required to not suck. But like Clifton, my knees are going to punish me if I try to run 10 miles. And since one of my goals is to keep my reconstructed knees healthy for the next 60 years, I won’t be running.

    The same can be said for this study. I’m pretty sure that the researchers didn’t track every conceivable marker of health/fitness during their research. I would be surprised if 60 min of cardio wasn’t superior to 30 min of cardio in at least a few markers of health and/or fitness performance

    That being said, long slow cardio bores the crap out of me. The only time I can do it is while watching sports on tv. 🙂

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