Workout smarter not harder

“Chronically elevated cortisol levels can cause weight gain in some people, especially around the abdomen area. … It may sound surprising but training too hard can contribute to high cortisol and actually sabotage your health or weight loss goals.It may be why you are not seeing results from your workouts.” source

I like to keep cardio workouts to 30-45 minutes (shorter bursts for HIIT and Tabata; longer for low intensity steady state “LISS”) and strength/resistance (weight) training to 45 minutes in order to reduce negative impacts of cortisol.

Exercise training improves memory

Tons of evidence-based research is available online touting the benefits of working out…and while reducing weight/body fat and increasing energy may come to mind at first, cognitive benefits have just as much positive impact on quality of life and healthy aging.

In this Harvard Health article, read how the benefits of exercise – from reduced insulin resistance and inflammation to improved mood and sleep have a positive impact on cognition as well. Other “findings indicate that aerobic exercise training is effective at reversing hippocampal volume loss in late adulthood, which is accompanied by improved memory function.”

Forgetting and Falling- Research supports that exercise can help prevent both!

The top 2 fears I hear related to ageing are falling and becoming forgetful (dementia and Alzheimer’s disease). Fortunately, there is really strong evidence supporting the positive impact of lifestyle, particularly diet and exercise on reducing risk of both. From a few recent articles:

Exercise treatment is a very promising intervention for Alzheimer’s patients and is even an effective treatment for cognitive impairment in patients without Alzheimer’s.  …promising studies have shown that exercise enhances cognition in Alzheimer’s patients and also reduces the accumulation of amyloid plaques in the brain, which are a physiological hallmark of the disease.” source

Exercise can also help prevent falls by making muscles stronger & more flexible, improving balance, and increasing how long you’re able to stay active. source

What Lifting Weights Does to the Harmful Fat Around Your Heart

Use of Physical Activity to Decrease Fall Injury Risk

At Risk for Alzheimer’s? Exercise Might Keep it at Bay