Monday, 12 January 2009

Oxidative Stress

The gym is packed out with cardio types today. Most of them probably don't know how flimsy the evidence is that what they are doing will lead to actual fat loss long-term. Even fewer of them will understand how such activity can lead to oxidative stress, hypertension and heart disease.

This article details an individual "who looked the picture of health—no cardiovascular risks, a marathon runner who had exercised vigorously each day for 30 years".

You ask most people in the gym how to lose weight and they will reply with something that can be summarised as 'eat less and do more'. If you ask them how to avoid heart disease, they will probably advise you eat less fat and 'do some cardio'.

I imagine many of the individuals at my local gym will have 'exercise-induced hypertension'. They are chronic over-exercisers - a condition that is acute in January.

The alarming thing for the many runners and spinners out there is that this case indicates cardio is not a panacea:

  • "Despite his exercise regime, he appears to be in the same boat as millions of Americans who do not exercise regularly".

Can you believe such a statement would EVER be said about a marathon runner?

Your Choice
Now you could, like me, follow a paleo model and undertake a brace of sprints for ten seconds or so a couple of times a week (no more than two minutes total per week). In addition you might want to play the odd game involving bursts of speed.

Alternatively you might (ahem...) want to head to the website of The British Heart Foundation (cheerily announcing "Beating Heart Disease Together"). They offer a list of marathons and running events you may wish to partake in here. They also advise that "eating too much fat, especially saturated fat, can have a bad effect on your cholesterol, which can increase your risk of coronary heart disease".

Don't just do it!

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