More vigorous exercise is not better, and doing too much will hurt the body. (imtmphoto/Shutterstock)
It is widely known that moderate physical activity can improve health, reduce the risk of disease, and increase life expectancy. But there is a type of exercise which, under certain conditions, can have the opposite effect-energetic exercise.
To measure exercise intensity, there is an indicator called MET. 1MET refers to the amount of energy a person expends while sitting still. MET values can indicate different exercise intensities.
● Inactivity – MET value ≤ 1.5: eg sitting or lying down.
● Low intensity exercise – MET value 1.6 ~ 3.0: eg leisurely walking or queuing in the shop.
● Moderate intensity exercise – MET value 3.0 to 6.0: eg brisk walking, vacuuming or gardening.
● Intense/vigorous exercise – MET value ≥ 6.0.
Among them, high intensity / vigorous sports include marathon, triathlon, alpine or cross country skiing, ball sports such as basketball, ice hockey, hockey, rugby and handball, as well as high intensity interval training as well as walking racing, running, and skipping rope.
General running and walking and other sports, as the speed increases, its intensity also increases. “A vigorous exercise could be a brisk walk at 4.5 miles per hour, jogging at 5 miles per hour, or running at 5.5 miles per hour,” says William Bo, director of preventive cardiology and cardiac rehabilitation at Beaumont Health Center in Royal Oak, Michigan, and director of cardiac rehabilitation at Oakland University Barry A. Franklin, professor of internal medicine at the Mount Medical College, introduced it in an interview with The Epoch Times.
The concept of vigorous exercise varies according to age and individual health status. Franklin reminded, “Even if some exercises seem less strenuous, if the subject is an 80-year-old man, it’s challenging for him.”
Although regular exercise has many benefits: it can improve blood lipids, control insulin resistance, reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, reduce cardiovascular disease morbidity and mortality, exercise can also improve people’s well-being and life expectancy. However, in some cases, vigorous exercise can reduce this benefit and carry life-threatening risks.
Excessive vigorous exercise can lead to cardiovascular disease
Compared to low-intensity exercise, vigorous exercise has fewer overall cardiovascular benefits and may contribute to cardiovascular disease.
Strenuous exercise can cause an increase in heart rate and blood pressure, which can lead to irregular heartbeats, or a heart attack, Franklin said. Especially for those with known or underlying heart disease – this includes people with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, blocked coronary arteries, structural heart problems, and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, high-intensity exercise can be fatal.
A study of 1228 myocardial infarction patients published in the “New England Journal of Medicine” earlier years indicated that within an hour after vigorous exercise, a person’s risk of myocardial infarction was 5.9 times greater than less activity or rest. Another study in the “American Journal of Epidemiology” also found that, compared to lower levels of physical activity or rest, the relative risk of myocardial infarction caused by intense exercise was 6.1 times.
Another study of 1098 healthy runners and 3950 healthy non-runners in Denmark showed that, compared to sedentary runners, slow runners had a 49% lower risk of death and moderate runners had a 49% lower risk of death. %, and notably, the fast runners had almost the same risk of death as the non-sedentary runners (only 6% lower). After adjustment, the all-cause mortality rate of moderate runners was three times that of slow runners, and the all-cause mortality rate of fast runners was nine times that of slow runners.
Another study of more than 1 million women showed that women who exercised vigorously every day had a greater risk of coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, and venous thromboembolism than women who exercised vigorously only two or three times a week higher.
Studies have shown that vigorous exercise can increase the risk of atrial fibrillation, coronary artery disease and cardiac arrhythmias. These excessively vigorous exercises can put a lot of pressure on the heart, cause dilation of the heart, cardiac insufficiency, and promote the release of certain substances that are not favorable to cardiovascular health, increasing the risk of sudden cardiac death.
In addition, prolonged vigorous exercise can produce large amounts of free radicals, accelerate atherosclerosis and lead to endothelial dysfunction. The presence and size of coronary artery calcified plaque is an important indicator of heart disease. A 25-year follow-up study of 3,175 Americans showed that those who exercised more than three times the recommended amount (more than 450 minutes per week) compared to those who did not meet the amount of exercise (less than 150 minute per week) By middle age, the risk of coronary atherosclerosis was 27 percent higher. This situation is even more pronounced among whites, who have an 80% higher risk of coronary artery disease.
Exercising beyond the inflection point has a high risk and also affects mitochondria and blood sugar
The timing and intensity of exercise has a “tipping point” for human health. A review of studies suggests that sustained vigorous exercise for more than 40 to 60 minutes is not necessary.
After going beyond the “inflection point”, the heart will begin to suffer damage, not only that, but there will be metabolic problems as well.
“When we started exercising once or twice a week, everything looked fine, and the mitochondria improved glucose control,” said Dr. Mikael Flockhart of the Swedish Academy of Sports and Health Sciences to The Epoch Times during the interview.
“However, when we push ourselves too hard every day and work really hard, we fall into a negative state.” The benefits of blood sugar control have also changed from positive to negative.
Research that Flockhart participated in showed that during a week of daily high intensity training, the test subjects’ mitochondrial respiration was significantly reduced, while glucose tolerance and insulin secretion were disrupted. “It’s just a stressful situation where you don’t get positive change.”
Flockhart further said that when overload training begins, the human body will be in an unbalanced state, the human immune response will be suppressed, and normal hormone secretion will be affected, so testosterone levels will decrease. In addition, these various stress factors caused by intense overload exercise will disrupt the quality of sleep and make people feel depressed.
Who is at greater risk for vigorous exercise
Franklin emphasized that intense exercise itself is not dangerous. In the right amount, “more intense exercise is more conducive to protecting the heart.”
But vigorous exercise can be fatal for some.
“The risk is greatest for people who are sedentary,” Franklin said.
Studies have suggested that the least active and unhealthy individuals are most at risk of exercise-related acute cardiac events. A database of more than 2.9 million gym members found that nearly half of all exercise-related deaths occurred among members who exercised infrequently or less than once a week.
2. People with heart disease
Many people don’t know they have heart disease, and Franklin said vigorous exercise with this condition is high risk.
People who were physically active and healthy in their youth are also more likely to develop underlying cardiovascular disease over the past few decades without knowing it. Therefore, when these who are not used to high intensity exercise take part in an activity considered vigorous exercise (such as being invited to a basketball game) on a whim, their risk of developing heart disease increases very much
In addition, some adults with a busy life rhythm tend to start their fitness journey with intense exercise, thinking that exercising this way saves time and is more efficient. But if the person has underlying cardiovascular disease without knowing it, it is very dangerous.
In the interview, Franklin mentioned a case he had come into contact with: a 38-year-old male nurse, determined to change his obese body through hard work, but died suddenly while running on the treadmill in the gym on the first day. .
Because it’s worth noting that around 38% of Americans between the ages of 40 and 59 suffer from cardiovascular disease (including high blood pressure, coronary heart disease, heart failure, and stroke), while among those between 60 and 79 age, this rises to 73% proportionally. About one in five heart attacks are silent.
“For this reason I tell every patient or middle-aged and elderly adult starting an exercise program to start with walking.” – Franklin recommends that people go through two or three months of step-by-step walking training instead of running as soon as they get up.
How to exercise in moderation
Franklin offers four plans for exercise through walking.
● For older people who are in poor physical condition, it is recommended to walk 4 days a week for 1 hour at a speed of 2 miles per hour. This is a very comfortable speed.
● For relatively healthy people, moderate intensity exercise is recommended, 3 days a week, walking at a speed of 3 miles per hour for 1 hour each time.
● For relatively healthy people, you can also walk for 30 minutes or more at a pace of 2.5 miles to 3 miles per hour, 5 to 6 days a week. This is also a program of moderate intensity.
● Walk 7000 steps a day.
Here is a little explanation on the fourth plan. Many people stick to their goal of walking 10,000 steps a day, when in fact it is possible to achieve some health benefits by walking 7,000 steps a day instead of 10,000. Franklin pointed to a large study published in JAMA in 2021 which found that those who took more than 7,000 steps a day had a 50% lower death rate over the next 10 years than those who walked less than 7,000 steps a day to 70%.
In addition, Franklin presented that for healthy people, running exercise can reduce mortality, and clinical research has proven that the greatest reduction in mortality occurs when running for about 35 minutes a day. Compared to walking, running can indeed achieve the effect of longer walking time in a shorter time, for example, running for 5 minutes can be equivalent to walking for 15 minutes.
Flockhart believes that the average person’s daily exercise to maintain health should be low intensity; high intensity training once or twice a week is also fine. But after more than three times, even if you do more, the benefits will not be greater, and it will affect the usual low intensity exercise. And all high intensity training time should not exceed 30 minutes in total.
“For maintaining health, the amount of exercise is the most important.” Many people exercise with the intention of getting more benefits from high intensity, “but this is not sustainable,” says Flockhar. Because it is very difficult for ordinary people to maintain frequent intense exercise, people must find long-term healthy exercise methods.
“And something like an easy jog or going out on your bike or going for a short walk, which is very enjoyable and enjoying nature, and I think that’s the most important form of exercise,” said Flockhart.
Living in a chaotic world, the way to keep a healthy heart is to seeHealth 1+1!
· What are the health benefits of walking? Multiple studies tell you
· More important than walking 10,000 steps? Walking 1 key is the most effective in reducing dementia and extending life
· 5 exercises that the heart likes to do often to improve heart function
Responsible editor: Li Qingfeng◇