Are You Killing Yourself To Get Healthy?
Have you worked out today? What did you do? Crossfit, weights, cardio, kickboxing? Or let me guess - High Intensity Interval Training!
While the world markets intense, sweaty workouts and celebrates pushing limits, no one tells us what certain workouts and training regimes do to our body in the long run. The human body is not a machine. While exercising is crucial for health, there is a limit to human endurance and that limit must be respected. Continue to push and your health and physical structure gives way.
Today’s obsession with fitness is likely rooted in a highly stressed society that’s crept away from hard, physical work. Yet we still work long hours; we’re short on time and the cheat code is intensity. We want the quick results slipping from us through a sedentary lifestyle. So we work at maximum daily capacity and at our highest intensity level.
Fitness, you see, is the universal fixer. It mends our improprieties, our dietary indiscretions, weekend lapses and daily lifestyle faux pas. If we just do a little more, it will give us better results, right?
No, that misguided assumption will do more harm than good.
The Inverse Fitness Curve
There is what’s called the inverse fitness curve, a concept that describes how benefits from physical activity decrease or even become harmful when the level of activity exceeds a certain threshold
That’s not to cast doubt on exercise, because it has incredible benefits: disease and obesity reduction, increased brain health and strengthened bones and muscles. Further, exercising at a moderate intensity has metabolic advantages, it helps to reduce stress, improve mild-to-moderate depression and anxiety, improve sleep and boost mood.