Just Three to Five Minutes of Exercise a Day… Really?

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By Staff Reports

(DGIwire)– Did you ever wonder if it’s true that very short bodyweight strength sessions can really build strength and lean body mass?  If so, you’re not alone, so keep reading. It’s a common misconception that you need heavy weights or much more exercise in order to reach your fitness and body composition goals.

Strength training is necessary for muscle maintenance and optimal health.  There are many ways to accomplish this goal.  Some are easier than others and often personal preferences, physical condition and time constraints come into play.  Yet, starting with basics: When it comes to maintaining or building muscles the one undisputed rule is “use it or lose it.”  Just think about what happens when someone needs to wear a cast while a broken bone is healing.  When the cast is removed, the muscle atrophy is obvious.  Lack of use is the cause.  The muscle will come back when limb is allowed to work again.

If you believe that heavy weights or a lot of exercise time is needed to build muscle, a study done at McMaster University in Ontario may change your mind. They examined a group of 21-year-old men who were all weight-lifting novices.  Three times a week, the men did knee extensions on a weight machine; on one leg, they lifted 80 percent of the maximum weight they could lift to fatigue, for eight to 10 reps.  On the other leg, they lifted 30 percent of their maximum to fatigue, at around 25 reps. They compared MRIs of the men’s quadriceps before and after 10 weeks of training. Their conclusion was there wasn’t much difference in muscle change between the heavy and light lifters.

“Mini-strength sessions are very effective for conditioning, maintaining and building muscle.  Natural muscle size potential is genetic.  Any method of exercise that stresses your muscles intensely, progressively and consistently will do the trick and build muscle strength.  When performed 3-5 times per day for one intense minute each as described in the book TurboCharged, will build strength and shape up a body fast. These exercises can be done anywhere, don’t require a gym membership and anyone can do them. Mini self-weight-bearing exercises are safe and can be made progressively harder and more intense as ones conditioning and strength improve,” according to Tom Griesel, co-author of TurboCharged: Accelerate Your Fat Burning Metabolism, Get Lean Fast and Leave Diet and Exercise Rules in the Dust.  “When exercising one minute at a time, it is much easier to focus on quality. In addition, these exercises place minimal metabolic stress on your body even though the weekly volume can really add up when 3-5 sessions per day are consistently performed.”

It almost sounds too good to be true.

Griesel adds, “Even a couch potato can find 3-5 minutes a day. Exercising this way is fun, it can be done anywhere. This simple routine will easily fit into even the most hectic day and will provide many health benefits. You just need to get started.”

So, what should you do?   Try a plank or modified plank pose and hold it for a minute.  Squat against a wall–much like as if you were sitting down on an imaginary seat, using the wall for stability–hold for a minute.   Try 60-seconds worth of push ups–or controlled push-offs–against the kitchen counter while waiting for your teapot to boil.   Need more ideas?  Pick up a copy of TurboCharged.  It’s filled with them!   Get moving!   Even YOU have 3-5 minutes to change your health and strength starting right now.

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