Doing exercise – no result? See what you could be doing wrong as it is common knowledge that physical activity is necessary for good health.
Nevertheless, the question remains whether it is more beneficial to engage in a moderate amount of exercise on a daily basis or to devote more time to strenuous activities on a few select days each week. According to recent findings from an Edith Cowan University study, one is noticeably more advantageous than the other.
Should I exercise for a short period of time each day or should I exercise for a longer period of time once a week? It’s a conundrum that many individuals who are concerned about their health have to deal with. A new study from Edith Cowan University (ECU) is providing a solution to the question.
Doing exercise – no result? See what you could be doing wrong
According to the most recent study, engaging in some level of physical exercise on a regular basis may very well be the strategy that offers the greatest benefits. This is in terms of increasing muscular strength. Additionally, it seems to imply that you do not need to put in an excessive amount of effort each and every day.
In the four-week training study that was conducted in Japan in conjunction with Niigata University and Nishi Kyushu University, participants were divided into three groups. They were asked to perform an arm resistance exercise. After the exercise, the participants’ muscle thickness and strength were measured. They were also analyzed to see how they changed.
The workout consisted of “maximal voluntary eccentric bicep contractions.” They were carried out on a machine that monitors the amount of muscular strength you gain from each muscle contraction you conduct at the gym. When a muscle contracts eccentrically, it extends. For example, lowering a heavy dumbbell while performing a bicep curl is an eccentric contraction.
Exercise(work out) Procedures
Two groups each carried out thirty contractions over the course of a week. The first group was doing six contractions over the course of five days of the week (6×5 group). The second group perform all thirty over the course of a single day, once a week (30×1 group).
One more group limited themselves to doing six contractions once every week. The group that performed 30 contractions in a single day did not demonstrate any gain in muscular strength after four weeks. However, their muscle thickness grew by 5.8 percent, which is indicative of an increase in muscle growth.
The group who performed six contractions once a week did not exhibit any changes in the thickness of their muscles or the strength of their muscles. On the other hand, the 6×5 group increased their muscle strength by more than 10%. Also, their muscles got thicker in a way that was similar to the 30×1 group.
Not the volume, but the frequency.
Importantly, the increase in muscle strength of the 6×5 group was comparable to the increase in muscle strength of the group in the previous study. That is, the group that performed only one three-second maximal eccentric contraction per day for five days a week for four weeks. This group also participated in the 6×5 protocol.
Ken Nosaka, a professor in the Exercise and Sports Science department at ECU, says that these studies continue to show that even small amounts of exercise done often could have a real effect on people’s strength.
He stated, “People think they have to do a lengthy session of resistance training in the gym. But that’s not the case.” Simply lowering a heavy dumbbell gently once, twice, or even six times a day is sufficient to get the desired results.
Participants in the study were expected to put in their very best effort. However, Professor Nosaka said that preliminary data from research that is still ongoing suggests that comparable outcomes may be attained. This is without the necessity of putting in one’s absolute best effort.
He explained, “In our study, we only employed the bicep curl exercise. But we assume this would be true for other muscles, at least to some extent.” The health of our muscles is a crucial consideration. This may help avoid the natural loss of muscular mass and strength that comes with advancing years.
“A loss in muscle mass is a cause of many chronic diseases. This includes cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, certain malignancies and dementia. In addition to musculoskeletal disorders such as osteoporosis.”
Take some time and chill out.
It is not fully understood why resistance workouts that include eccentric contractions in lesser dosages provide a greater response. That is from the body than exercises that use larger loads and are performed less frequently. Per Professor Nosaka, it might have something to do with the number of times the brain is asked. That is, asked to make a specific muscle act in a certain way.
However, he emphasized that it was equally necessary to incorporate relaxation into a routine of physical activity. In this particular research, the 6×5 group was allowed two days off per week, as he explained.
“Muscle adaptations occur while we are resting. If someone were miraculously able to train 24 hours a day, there would really be no progress at all.” “Muscle adaptations occur when we are resting.”
However, it appears that muscles prefer to be stimulated on a more regular basis. Although muscles require rest in order to increase both their strength and their muscular mass.
Additionally, he emphasized that there was no use in attempting to “make up.” That is for a period of time in which one was unable to exercise by engaging in a larger workout session at a later date. “If someone is ill and can’t exercise for a week, that’s fine. But it is best to just return to normal activity once you’re feeling better,” he added. “I
Advisory notes for clarity
Guidelines issued by the Australian Government currently recommend that individuals make an effort to be physically active on a daily basis. That is completing between 2.5 and 5 hours of moderate physical exercise each week.
According to Professor Nosaka, there should be a greater emphasis placed on the significance of making physical exercise a daily habit. Instead of focusing on reaching a weekly minute goal. “It’s not as successful as doing a bit of exercise every day at home,” he added. “If you’re simply going to the gym once a week, it’s not as effective as doing a bit of exercise every day at home.”
“This research, together with our prior study, implies that it is more beneficial to accumulate a modest quantity of activity each week. This is as opposed to only spending a significant amount of time exercising once a week for a prolonged period of time.” It is important for us to understand that each and every muscle contraction counts. Also, that the frequency with which you do them is what really matters. ”
A study that was conducted and published in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports supports this. This is because it was found that one might achieve greater results by completing a lower number of eccentric contractions on a daily basis. This is as opposed to a larger number of them once a week.