Spend Less Time Exercising

A couple of weeks ago, The New York Times Well Blog posted an article about how long one needs to exercise in order to truly benefit from it. The finding? Possibly, a mere 6 minutes. Could it be that we have been spending hours in the gym, week after week and day after day, when all we really need to do is spend 6 minutes?

Granted, if you choose to go the 6 minute route you need to absolutely kill yourself, working to near maximum exertion. This is likely to be stressful on the joints, depending on what activity you choose. Your heart would certainly have to be in good condition to take this intense bout of exercise as well.

But 6 minutes. There aren't many constructive activities that you can achieve in such little time. Scan the newspaper? Review your e-mail? Write that thank-you note that you've been meaning to write for the last month?

I don't blame you if you aren't jumping up and down about these findings. The thought of sweating your ass off and panting like a dog in heat as you amp up the treadmill just may not be your cup of tea, even if it is for only 6 minutes. Moreover, you may have limitations that make it impossible for you to exercise at such an intense rate. You may even enjoy a workout that is a tad longer. (Yes, it is true. Some people really like to exercise).

But keep this in mind: exercise doesn't have to be a marathon session. Why not shorten that treadmill session that you loathe every once in a while? Add some difficult intervals and shorten it to 20 minutes. This will enable you to get out of the gym early without guilt to do what you really want to do.

After all, exercise is supposed to enhance your life, not bog it down. You've long known that variety is the spice of life when it comes to mixing up your routine. Think about mixing it up in terms of length and intensity as well. These changes well help you keep things fresh, interesting, and challenging, and that's what keeps you at it.

Popular Posts