New research shows that the most effective form of exercise for adults—especially middle-age adults—may be fast, short, and intense types of anaerobic exercise (as contrasted with low-intensity exercise like steady walking or bowling). (Search: Best anaerobic exercises)
That's because we may be able to unleash exercise-induced growth hormone with only 10 to 30 seconds of higher intensity interval training. Growth hormone is produced by the pituitary gland to help maintain tissues and organs, but levels start to decrease in middle age.
“The most powerful body-fat-cutting, muscle-toning, anti-aging substance known in science—growth hormone—is naturally produced by the body with this type of exercise,” says Greta Blackburn, CPT, author of the Immortality Edge and founder of a national series of boot camps called FITCAMPS.
Video: Anti-aging yoga poses
Blackburn recently released Greta B's Figure 8 DVD, a 20-minute workout that includes just four minutes of intense exercise meant to get you out of breath to safely ease you into a high-intensity anaerobic exercise program. (Better your results with the Flat Belly Diet) Blackburn acts as your personal, at-home trainer by guiding you through the short workout so you know when to increase your intensity and when to slow it down.
Whether your normal exercise routine includes walking, cycling, swimming, cross-country skiing, or jogging; adding short intervals during your workout can increase your fat burn and trigger your body to produce more human growth hormone to help slow aging. Remember to talk to your doctor before starting any new exercise program: You shouldn’t go all-out to start, but can gradually work your way to a faster pace as your fitness levels improve. (Free poster: A little encouragment to keep you motivated!)
Fitness Tips: Top Food Mistakes That Mess With Workout Results
Tell us: What are your tricks for adding intervals into your exercise routine?