The Fountain of Youth: Run Yourself Younger

Do you know that exercise and a balanced diet is good for your health? Sure you do; it’s the kind of stuff people have been preaching forever, yet science keeps baffling us with just how good it actually is for us. It goes deeper than a simple boost to your energy levels and a happy heart, by focusing on the right kind of exercise, you can actually reverse the aging in your muscles and appear way more youthful than you originally thought.

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It sounds too good to be true, but regular exercise is able to give you all of this and more. Here is a handful of the best types of exercise to keep your cells young, reverse the signs of age in your skin, and feel absolutely great about yourself.

Cardio or weight lifting?

While building muscles is certainly good for your cognitive functions, such as memory, your muscles, as well as your bones and cardio has always been seen as something definitely required to build and maintain a stable level of fitness, but generally, it takes a balance of both of these to keep your body in shape – and building muscles are especially important for women who tend to lose bone density as soon as they hit thirty.

Focus on getting a good cardio workout before you start to lift those weights, though – or yourself, if you prefer to build strength like this. It’s better to get this over with before you start to lift as you’d otherwise be too tired to get the most out of your heart pumping routine.

Aim for high-intensity cardio

If you want to feel and look years younger than you actually are, or just prevent the signs of aging in the first place, you need to push yourself a bit more. While a nice and steady jog is good for a lot of things, it’s going to have to be more intense if you want to reap the kind of benefits we’re talking about here.

In a study from a few years back, sedentary adults were set to exercise high-intensity interval training (HIIT) for about three times a week. The results baffled the scientists more than they expected; a skin sample showed that by simply squeezing this into their everyday routines, they had reversed the signs of aging in their skin by twenty to forty years.

The study showed that while both age groups experienced benefits from HIIT workout with the younger group seeing a 49 percent boost to their mitochondrial capacity, the older group actually saw a staggering 69 percent increase. This capacity is the cell’s abilities to take in oxygen and produce energy, by the way, just to clarify. It has also been scientifically proven, that HIIT workouts will continue to burn fat for the following 18 hours (that is a crazy benefit just there).

The verdict is therefore clear; get moving and look younger.

What kind of exercise is best?

Any kind of exercise is good for you, and by finding something you enjoy, you increase your chances of sticking to it – and again giving those old mitochondria what it wants. The test group in the study above was given all sorts of exercises to try out; some did weight lifting, others did cycling, while another group again did both cardio and weights.

It was the HIIT cycle group that had the most intense exercise, though, and they also outranked all the other groups in terms of age reversal and benefits at a cellular level. You should get cycling, in other words, and try to break your workout into more intense but manageable pieces.

Remember that the subjects in this study were mostly sedentary before they started with this, and all of them – as far as I’m concerned – were able to push themselves to reach their goals. If you’re not into that stationary bike at the gym, do yourself a favor and enjoy the great outdoors by fixing up your old vehicle and treating it to a cycle insurance first.

You can easily get this kind of HIIT with other cardio sports, too, so try to find something you enjoy and stick to it. Running, dancing, tennis, team sports – you name it. Push yourself to make the workout intense, squeeze in a few breaks to make it an interval, and keep going.

While we would all like to look as young as possible, some people are blessed with younger-looking genes and a body that simply seems to leap from one cardio class to the next. Maybe they don’t depend as much on their genetics as we thought – and maybe we can also get this light and active body by pushing ourselves a bit more?

Try it out for at least three times a week, have a look in the mirror, and smile.


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