Serious cardio multiple times a week is the most important form of exercise you can do as you get older. I’m talking rigorous work, 30-40 minutes per day, every day. It’s essential.
When I read Younger Next Year (A book I highly recommend, by the way) it woke me up in the health department. Author Chris Crowley tells it to you straight. If you’re in your 40’s and you want to be productive in your 50’s, 60’s and 70’s (I mean not just going to doctors and hospitals), pay attention to some of the essential teachings here.
“Behavioral change can make a profound effect on your life at any age, especially in the “third act.” Something you control can make a huge difference. Exercise is the flywheel of the good life.”
- Chris Crowley
My good friend Dana Cavalea is the former Strength and Conditioning Coach of the New York Yankees and he offered his thoughts on how exercise is the answer.
Have you ever been to a local gym and watched people work on the cardio equipment?
Treadmills, bikes, ellipticals, and steppers..
How are all of these people training?
How do they know what they are doing?
They are guessing..
They are using TIME as the metric to drive POTENTIAL RESULTS...
They are using TIME as they way they judge a bad workout vs. a good workout vs. a great workout..
But other than TIME.. they really have no clue as to what they are doing.. or how hard they are working..
I mean we can watch the BOGUS CALORIE COUNTER on the machine.. but we all know that that doesn't actually work because it doesn't consider your weight, height, and metabolic rate.. it is based on assumptions..
So..after having a great conversation at my gym yesterday, with a very successful Hollywood Make-Up Artist..
I disclosed the secret..
The Talk Test..
It is actually a scientifically validated test, that measures rate of perceived exertion..
So.. as you are doing your cardio.. if you want know you are WORKING HARD ENOUGH.. You should not be able to speak in full, uninterrupted sentences..
Your respiratory rate should be working at such a rate, that the formation of clear sentences should be hard to difficult..
This would mean your heart rate is above 80-85% of max and you are truly maximizing your caloric burn.. and not only that.. your METABOLISM will be higher long after your training session..
This is known as EPOC or After-Burn..
It works.. and since you will be working harder than NORMAL..You can actually get away with a shorter training session..
Instead of an hour of cardio.. You can now do 20-30 minutes and feel wiped... yet alert and worked!
I encourage you to TALK AT THE GYM.. and see if you are working hard enough to make a difference..
Do not be like the other folks.. walking at 3.0mph on a treadmill at ZERO INCLINE thinking it works..
They call it CARDIO because it is supposed to challenge your CARDIAC MUSCLE.. Pushing Blood through the heart.. and forcing strong circulation..
That is how you BUILD HEALTH..
That is how you build endurance and lean out...
This is the conversation that needs to be had.. Not some infomercial selling trickery to viewers..
It takes work to MAXIMIZE PERFORMANCE..
Now.. Let's Do It TOGETHER!
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Great article. I was thinking the exact same thing at Saturday’s spin class when I had a puddle around me and 95% of the other people in the class had a dry floor around them and their clothes were dry. My shirt and shorts looked like I just got out of the pool:)