Over my years of teaching classes and training clients, I discovered a lot of people think that if they exercise extra hard or long, they can burn off a bad day of overeating. This may be the reason behind the proliferation of extreme exercise classes. Let me reassure you; that plan does not work that well and could potentially injure you.
Calories in-Calories out
It comes down to this, If you take in 2,800 calories and your daily caloric expenditure is 1,800 calories, you are going to gain weight. So let's say you want to burn off that 1,000 calorie surplus; you are going to have to exercise hard for at least for 1.5 hours or more. And even then, you are just breaking even. In that case, if you overeat daily, you would end up not gaining your weight but maintaining your current weight. I see this a lot at the gym -- people who have been working out for years but are staying the same. Of course, they are better off than not exercising at all and it has helped keep them in good health. But if the goal is to lose weight, then one needs to rethink his or her plan.
Extreme Exercise Injuries
You have heard of the extreme exercise classes, such as Cross Fit or the DVD's like Insanity. Many doctors are seeing injuries especially from those who are new to exercise or won't change their nutrition, but are still looking for results. Here is a story that was reported in the Columbus Dispatch:
Dr. Jason Dapore of OhioHealth’s Spine, Sport & Joint Center said he has seen several patients with injuries related to these workouts, including damage to rotator cuffs, tendinitis in the knee and neck injuries.
“It’s not something they talk about in the commercials,” said Dapore, who has done the original P90X and is working his way through the second incarnation. “There are some dynamic, complex moves.”
Food for Thought
I started my fitness career in the mid-1980s while pursuing my Master Degree in Exercise Physiologyat Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. Back then, many of my mentors were teaching high impact aerobics in church basements and in facilities with cement floor. Some of my colleagues were extreme runners who would participate in over 5 marathons a year. Most of my zealous friends and mentors have had knee and hip replacements. Now that I am older and wiser, I pepper my workouts with modified extreme workouts. The magic trick, however, is in the maximum 1 hour duration of the workout intensity -- including weights and cardio routines. Of course, no physically noticeable results will come of it if I fail to incorporate a healthful eating plan, which I do!
What have been some of your own experiences over extreme workouts to attempt to fix bad wellness habits in record time?