Scientists Discovered Why High Intensity Interval Training Can Match Endurance Training

Scientists have always struggled to understand exactly how short, few minutes, intense interval exercises can produce similar effects to much more time consuming endurance trainings.

High intensity interval training, also known by its acronym HIIT, has become very popular in recent years with beginners, professional athletes and patients with reduced muscle functions as it has clear health benefits. Now, researchers from Stockholm’s Karolinska Institutet discovered cellular mechanisms behind the positive benefits of HIIT and why endurance training is undermined by antioxidants.

Source: Scientists Discovered Why High Intensity Interval Training Can Match Endurance Training

Here’s what they’re doing 3 times a week:

  • You need a heart rate monitor (HRM) for…
  • 5-10 minute warm up
  • 4 minutes of exercise at a heart rate of suggested BPM (220-age)
  • 3 minutes of easy work, attempting to get the heart rate down to ~135 BPM
  • Repeat 3 times

Disclaimer: If you are at high risk for a cardiac event it might be best to see a physician before participating in vigorous exercise like HIIT. But for the majority, there should be no reason to avoid this type of exercise.  I’ve covered why raising your heart rate is good for you in the past.

The idea of max heart rate is debated (see this article), and can be very personal.  I’m told that if you can talk while maintaining a high heart rate, it’s OK for you.

Stem Cell Trial Aims to Cure Blindness

Surgeons in London have carried out a pioneering human embryonic stem cell operation in an ongoing trial to find a cure for blindness for many patients.

Source: Stem cell trial aims to cure blindness

They’ll have to wait til at least Christmas to see if the patients’ vision has improved and if it is sustainable.

They used an embryonic stem cell in an attempt to rebuild the RPE, which is how they can apply it to dry AMD (I did not gather that any drusen would be removed, but I guess it would strengthen the integrity of the RPE after suffering mottling/RPED’s, and thus prevent the choroid from breaking through???). This might, one day, potentially cure only “wet” macular degeneration (MD).  Wet is the less common (10%) kind of MD, but there are still going to be millions affected by the more common “dry” (non-leaking) type of MD.

That said, a company called OCATA has halted blindness from MD (dry and Stargardt’s) in 17 out of 18 patients, and actually improved vision in 10. They have patented a technique to regrow stem cells and they are the real deal, now in Phase II I believe.

Working Out Too Hard Can Hurt Your Progress

…The problem is, if you make a task look hard, if you have to exert a lot of physical and emotional effort to accomplish it, you end up teaching your body that that task is hard. I see it all the time in the context of lifting weights: women and men just barely grinding out reps, grimacing in pain the whole time. Not to mention, consistent all-out effort often leads to all-out injury.

Source: Why You DON’T Need to ‘Go Big or Go Home’ at the Gym

I really don’t think this is a major problem for 90% of the population. Most people are far from overdoing it, and get sore going gardening. The problem is doing nothing at all, or acting like walking your dog around the block is a worthwhile fitness program. Sure, “something is better than nothing”, but if “better than absolutely nothing” is your fitness plan, you might try amping it up slowly until leisure activities don’t count as a workout for you.

Feeling Sick or Tired? To Train, Or Not to Train…

[Former pro Ben] Day believes that every single athlete undergoing a training cycle needs to better understand when to push through fatigue, illness or injury and when they should rest and recover. Below, Day discusses some guidelines in making the right decisions.

Source: Feeling sick or tired? To train or not to train…

For content from a cycling website, the only thing that applies to cycling is measuring power via a power meter (in the hub, cranks, or pedals).  Which lead me to wonder if anyone has implemented a power meter in running shoes… Someone has, and DCRainmaker has a review!  If you haven’t read DC Rainmaker stuff before, it’s incredibly detailed and insightful.