BOOST FITNESS AT HOME
No, this is not your excuse to skip this evening’s run – it is, however, a comprehensive rundown of how you can accelerate your fitness gains in the comfort of your own home
HIGHER STAIRS, LOWER BP
Researchers writing in the the journal of The North American Menopause Society have found that simply climbing the stairs can not only build leg strength, but also lower blood pressure. While the study focused exclusively on postmenopausal women, the findings are applicable to a much wider audience. Time to avoid those lazy lifts and escalators and start taking the stairs.
TV CAN KILL
It’s healthier to spend more time outside than slumped in front of the TV, but now new research has shed light on what those hours on the sofa are doing to your body. According to the University of Minnesota, too much time watching TV can increase your chance of developing potentially fatal blood clots known as venous thrombosis. Yet another reason to get up and outside.
START THE DAY RIGHT
You may have heard once or twice that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But now recent research tells us that the first meal of the day should be a truly significant one. No more light bites, it’s time to super-size your brekkie to boost your training. A recent study in the International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism found that many of us just don’t eat enough at breakfast time, meaning that we’re starting our training day at a real disadvantage. Waiting too long between meals, and not eating the correct amount, may also hinder your ability to recover from your workouts effectively.
CLEAN UP YOUR ACT
If you’ve ever needed a good reason to actually do the cleaning and other low-impact chores, tell yourself you should because it’s helping your running. That’s because new research by Ace in the USA found that active recovery beats passive recovery when you’re resting between bouts of intense exercise. When the runners used active instead of passive recovery, they were able to run longer. When the cyclists used active recovery, they were able to maintain their power in the second round of exercise (versus when they did passive recovery and their power output actually decreased). In other words, don’t kick back and watch TV if you’d had a tough workout.
GET MORE SLEEP
On average, modern humans get around seven hours’ sleep a night, even though we know we should be aiming for eight. It turns out, though, that humans should really be looking to get 9.55 hours of sleep each night, according to research published in the American Journal of Physical Anthropology. By analysing the sleep patterns of primates, scientists have calculated the optimum amount of sleep for our species, which is still far below other primates. If your boss corners you for oversleeping, blame it on evolution.