Exercise for HEALTH: the story of Amy

Here is a case study to showcase what training for health should look like. It’s definitely different than training for peak performance. While the physical freaks, the hardcore, and the professionals may have their day in the spotlight, most folks just want to be healthy and look good.

In the grand scheme of things, nearly all of us should look to the Exercise Moderates.

You may not want to listen to my advice.

This, from the guy who works in physical rehab and sports performance. Who takes time and effort trying to deliver original content on a training related blog. A guy with a hobby that includes speed and lifting massive masses of mass. A professional in the biz, who enjoys reading and thinking about training and sharing the journey with others.

But what if he’s wrong? Or less correct than say, someone with a different perspective? Someone who lives at the same address who doesn’t put in near as much effort?
I know my wife better than anyone on the planet. I know Amy’s history, her ways and inclinations. I understand her and what it means to be her – to a point. Of course we see the world differently. We don’t agree on every jot and tiddle, nor do we feel the need to.

Amy is an Exercise Moderate. She values training enough to make time for it, and little more. I don’t understand such creatures. It simply does not compute. Amy never was a serious athlete. She does not love or hate sports or exercise.

Amy knows plyos!

She is usually able to overcome the anti-exercise inertia that we all experience. She gets it done. She knows and believes in what’s good for her, the prevention of osteoporosis, the maintaining of strength and balance, and the blood flow to the brain. She has experienced how it makes her feel.

Three to four days per week, Amy runs for approximately thirty minutes and then lifts weights. The resistance exercise is an abbreviated total body routine against free weights and gravity; a few circuits of movements such as squat, push-up, row, deadlift, and lunge variations.

Posture, balance, strength, stability, check, check, check, check…With minimal equipment and no travel time, the ceremony is finished within 40 to 50 minutes.

If she’s feeling a bit soft, she’ll reign in her diet a little. If her back or neck aches, she’ll do a handful of select stretches and upper back strengthening. Even more spectacular and startling is that fact that she accomplishes this without drama or fanfare.

This is likely the absolute best way to go for health. We are finally pinning this down, and it makes sense. A number of studies have suggested that moderate exercise appears best for longevity, and while exercise is critical, the “more is better” mindset needs to go.

Although joggers as a group appear to live longer than sedentary nonjoggers, moderate joggers have lower mortality rates than sedentary nonjoggers.

However, strenuous joggers – people who ran faster than 7 mph for more than four hours a week; or who ran faster than 7 mph for more than 2.5 hours a week with a frequency of more than three times a week – have a mortality rate that is not statistically different from that of the sedentary group.

The dose of running that was most favorable for reducing mortality was jogging 1 to 1.4 hours per week, with no more than three running days per week, at a slow or average pace,” the authors wrote.

In truth, the problem may be that the Exercise Moderates are not the ones who feel compelled to work in fitness, study exercise through research and experience, or write health/fitness blogs. They have received the numerous benefits of their efforts. And they have moved on.

In time, somebody will have to care for the couch potatoes (metabolic disease) and sport/fitness fanatics (orthopedic disabilities).

– – – – – – – –

This is Amy
She doesn’t feel the need to compete at anything.
Amy overcomes many legitimate barriers and the internal inertia that resists movement.
She doesn’t need a training partner or app.
She does, however, need some music.
Amy can perform one unassisted chin-up but could care less.
She doesn’t make a big deal about personal records or set-backs.
Amy doesn’t complicate and obsess regarding her diet.
Amy is smart.
                      Be like Amy!

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