Four Rough Minutes to Fitness

You know why those 20 minutes a day! exercise equipment infomercials are so successful? It’s not really the product they are pushing that creates those before and after results, it is the exercise routine.

You don’t need to buy any of that stuff or join any clubs to get in shape. Here is one of the most successful exercise routines on earth and it only takes 20 minutes two times a week. You can run down the street, get on a bike, or jump up and down… Anything that gets you sweating and raises your heart rate considerably.

But first a standard disqualifier: Ask your doctor if doing this exercise is likely to kill you. If he says yes or maybe, don’t do it.

So you have talked to a doctor and you are greenlighted to get fit and healthy. Your doctor has likely told you this exercise will decrease insulin resistance (making you less likely to develop type II diabetes), increase metabolism (bye bye pesky fat cells), and give you a stronger muscoskeletal system. Don’t be bitter about the check you had to cut for that doctor visit, in the long run, you’ll be seeing less of that guy because you’ll be healthier. Damn good investment.

Choose an activity such as power walking, running, jumping jacks, cycling, or if you can, riding a unicycle. Anything but sitting on the sofa, sorry. I’ve run across this exercise recipe in nursing books on diabetes and on fitness web sites.

FOUR ROUGH MINUTES

Let’s pretend we’re walking/running in place. You don’t even need a street to do that, no excuses that you don’t have what you need to do this. All you need is determination.

Stretch out for 3 minutes. (this is the most important step, it prevents injuries)

Exercise as hard as you can for 30 seconds. (run! run! run!)

Slow down for 90 seconds. (walk in place)

Repeat the high intensity exercise and recovery 7 more times.

You’re done.

Notice the “hard as you can” part adds up to a measley four minutes? Don’t worry about how many calories you’ve burned or what the scale says. You’re exercising. You will feel and look better and you did not spend a penny on any equipment.

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15 thoughts on “Four Rough Minutes to Fitness

  1. This is something (intermittent sprinting) I have added to my fitness program over the last two weeks (I’m a treadmiller). I’ve noticed some improvement in my endurance and my legs are firmer in the back.

  2. I think it was Garfield who once claimed that exercise is 50% mental. I can’t even get that part accomplished!

    But I do like the number crunching. When you break it down and stack it all up against the the things we so that are actually time wasting, we really have no time-related excuses left.

    • Hi Kitty!
      This sounds like something I could possibly do. Thanks so much for the good advice. In fact, my grandfather used to do something like this when I was a kid. But he took alot longer. I will give this a try and let you know. I think I’ll have to work up to the 7 intervals though…Love ya, Sharon

    • Brian, I have myself trained to where all I gotta do is convince myself to put on my running shoes. From there it is automatic.
      My dogs are in on it too because I start out by taking them for a walk. They start begging at a certain time of day to go out and once I’m all sweaty for that I might as well finish my exercise.

    • Sharon, you can do this. You just start with what you can do, but make it a routine, say, do this two or three times a week and stick with that. Once you have seven workouts done, it’s a habit. It’s on automatic.

    • How about one with training wheels? I swear, I have one in my attic.
      I also have a unicycle but none of us has ever been able to operate it. Which makes me wonder, why do I have that thing and where did it come from.

  3. LOVE READING YOURBLOG, LOST MY 29 YR OLD SON TO A CONST, ACC 3 YRS AGO YOU R SO INSPIRATIONAL IN MY JOURNEY. I HAD ALWAYS READ MYSTERY OLIE ALSO DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW TO CONTACT HER OR FIND OUT ANYTHING ABOUT LINDA, WE STARTED OUR JOURNEY ABOUT THE SAME TIME, I WOULD SO LOVE TO HEAR HOW SHE & HER FAMILY R DOING. THANKS FOR ANY HELP YOU CAN GIVE & THANKS FOR INSPIRING ME

    • Thank you Sandy. I remember you writing about your son over at Linda’s blog.

      Yes, I do know how to get in touch with her, I will send her your email address you left with this comment and ask her to send you an email.

  4. Great post!

    I agree one hundred percent with the part about not needing a gym membership or equipment. Many years ago, I stumbled across an exercise plan in a men’s magazine that takes about twenty minutes or less and can be done anywhere and anytime – even while on vacation. It’s heavy on walking and stretching and the first time I followed the plan I got results (and compliments from people) in 2-4 weeks. About three years later, I dusted the pages off and did it again (virginia did it with me) and we both couldn’t believe how much better we looked (again, in only two weeks). People don’t realize that how much better they sleep, etc. even when doing moderate exercise.

    r.

    I tell people who are dieting that the real secret is just burning more calories than you take in. And if there isn’t much you’re able to do? Well, one minute a day is better than nothing at all . . .

  5. Rocky, I’m glad you mentioned how quickly you see results, I’ve had the same experience with changing up my routine.

    That’s so true, one minute a day is better than nothing at all. This is similar to how I psych myself to get started with my exercise, all I have to do is one lap.

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