Thanks to fitness trackers and influencers on social media, the pressure to “get a good workout” can be intensifying. As a result, many people define good exercise as one that makes them sweat profusely and has a very high heart rate. moderate fitness regimen such as walking and yoga. But it is wrong.
According to research, just walk 21 minutes of exercise a day can lower the risk of heart disease by 30%, but exercise like yoga Reduce chronic back pain and bring you great benefits mental health.
In other words, that HIIT workout or mildly painful run might not actually be for you. At least not for every workout. Experts shared what you need to know about low-intensity exercise and why it’s just as effective as high-intensity activity.
You don’t have to hit your maximum heart rate every workout.
When it comes to heart rate, which most fitness trackers measure, “tYou don’t have to reach your maximum heart rate in your workout. ” Andrew JagimDirector of Sports Medicine Research at Mayo Clinic Health System in Onalaska, Wisconsin.
to calculate max health You can subtract your age from 220 for your heart rate, Jagim said. If you are 45 years old, subtract 45 from 220 and your maximum heart rate is 175 beats per minute.
Most people’s heart rates, including athletes, remain between 60% and 80% of their maximum during aerobic exercise. He added that people exercising at or just below their maximum heart rate (between 80% and 100%) should not subject themselves to prolonged, strenuous exercise. Training at intensity he should last 15-20 minutes and include interval training.
According to Jagim, this is 30 seconds of maximal effort followed by 1-2 minutes of light recovery, followed by 15-20 minutes of what appears to be a heart rate of 50% to 60% of maximum. .
In this case, you don’t need to do a very intense 1 hour workout. In practice, shorter times are recommended.
A slower paced workout has obvious benefits.
Many high-intensity workouts rely on timed interval training, like the 30 seconds on, 1 minute off method above, but that’s usually not the case for low-intensity workouts. Rajina McKissickis a Certified Personal Trainer and Group Fitness Instructor at Lumos Yoga & Barre in Philadelphia.
Low-intensity workouts include walking, barre, Pilates, and certain dance classes. These activities can be done at your own pace so you can reap all the benefits of exercise.
“You can spend as much time as you want, which means you can focus on other things that are really important, like maximizing movement, full range of motion, mobility, flexibility, depth, strength,” she says. I was.
Another benefit of low-intensity workouts is that you can focus and control your breathing, says McKissick. “Often with high-intensity workouts, people don’t know how to breathe properly, so they either get tired quickly or feel light-headed or nauseous,” she added.
For slower-paced, lower-intensity workouts, lasers allow you to focus on your breathing and use its breathwork to get past certain movements.
It’s important to exercise every week, but it doesn’t have to be hard, heart-pounding exercise every time.
Cross-training is possible by incorporating different types of movements.
Adding low-intensity exercises to your fitness plan allows for cross-training. This is common among professional and college athletes.
“You give yourself the ability to challenge yourself in a different way,” she said.
Some people who haven’t done any low-intensity exercise may wonder why a rigorous cardio or high-intensity workout regimen isn’t giving them the results they want, McKissick said. says.
She explained this because, “If you’re always trying to run fast and only focus on cardio, your muscles won’t get the full benefit from the exercise.”
It’s important to prioritize workouts that you can stick with and enjoy.
It’s easy to get annoyed when your heart rate shows up in huge numbers on your fitness tracker, but unless you’re doing a very specific kind of workout, you shouldn’t.
The only people who need to reach their maximum heart rate are those who want to perform at their maximum. According to the American College of Sports MedicineYou can stay within that 60% to 80% window for cardio, basic endurance and fat burning.
“Don’t feel pressured to exercise at a high intensity that makes the workout painful or unenjoyable. It’s not a predictor of long-term success,” Jagim said.
It’s important to listen to your body and follow a fitness regimen you enjoy that incorporates different types of fitness, including strength training, cardio, and low-intensity training, says McKissick. . And if a particular trending workout doesn’t work for you, it’s okay, she said.
“There’s a difference between challenging yourself and pushing yourself too hard when it comes to fitness,” says McKissick.