Obesity is rapidly growing health problem in the United States and worldwide. Approximately 66% of Americans are overweight, and 32% are obese. In addition, one-third of children and adolescents ages 6 to 19 are considered overweight or obese. That’s a troubling increase of 12% compared from 20 years ago.
Fitness industry, equipment manufacturers and health organizations are continuously offering new training programs, treatments, and equipment. However, the obesity growth clearly indicates that we don’t understand the full extent of this problem because the number people with excessive weight is steadily increasing.
This subject requires further research and in my view, I believe the following factors need to be addressed to solve this problem.
According to American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), all adults age 18-65 should engage in moderate-intensity aerobic exercise for a minimum of 30 minutes five days a week, or vigorous activity for a minimum of 20 minutes three days a week. In addition, every adult person should perform muscular strength and endurance activities a minimum two times a week.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services states that if you spend 30-45 minutes of washing a car, gardening, dancing, raking leaves or shoveling snow it will be considered as moderate physical activities and you will improve your health and well-being.
Overweight people tried to follow these exercise guidelines, and they experienced little or no success. A report from The Institute of Medicine suggests that for the overweight and obese people to gain a tangible weight loss exercise duration must be vigorous and extend up to two hours or more.
Aerobic and Anaerobic Training
Constant intensity aerobic exercise is the ability to sustain moderate to high-intensity movement for a prolonged period of time. Variable intensity anaerobic exercise is short bouts of intensive effort such as sprints or weightlifting. Modern exercise science has established that aerobic training burns more calories from fat, while anaerobic exercises tend to burn more calories from carbohydrates.
Most of the activities in a typical gym are of anaerobic nature and just staying active and exercising anaerobically is not sufficient to lose weight. The conventional notion of hard workouts getting “some sweat and heart rate up” is not proven to be effective. We need to develop a deeper knowledge how the energy in the human body is produced and expended to develop effective weight loss training programs.
Research suggests a correlation between excessive body weight and functional ability to move efficiently. Overweight individuals have a tendency to move with poor mechanics, and it is not possible to maintain moderate or high-intensity movement for an extended period of time. In turn, they tend to exercise anaerobically disrupting a proper balance between aerobic and anaerobic energy distribution.
As a result, the body burns more sugar, and the fat loss is limited. Also, if your exercise becomes predominantly anaerobic, it will lead to physical and emotional burnout that may force you to stop the training.
Getting physically fit is a very challenging and complex problem, and it requires incorporating a physical component into your lifestyle. Everybody knows that there are many good reasons to improve fitness but for the majority of inactive people, it is a weak motivator. The idea of becoming disciplined and determined to get fit is not sustainable because you cannot force exercise by order into your life.
Developing vitality of exercise through natural and functional movement is by far a more effective approach. Functional training will help you to gain a better understanding of a key aspect of developing a connection with your body. It will help you learn how the body is designed to function as opposed to forcing it to move in your own way.
Research has confirmed that one of the major benefits of cardiovascular exercise is enhanced feelings of vitality and increased energy. It is true that change can be very difficult, but stress can make you stronger in the ways you never imagined. If you make a top priority to develop aerobic endurance and stamina, it will give the motivation and strength to readjust your frame of thinking to overcome this challenge.