But many of us made the observation that one of the best ways to objectively measure the aerobic benefits of endurance exercise was the HDL (cholesterol) level, and that these three activities usually had very little effect on HDL. We here are now following 29 patients on this high intensity (Superslow) protocol (17 minutes in the gym every 5th day), and 28 of the 29 have more than doubled their HDL's, mostly from the low 20's to the mid/high 50's. (Show this to your doctor and see if he knows of any drug or activity that can double HDL!)
Remember when the only thing your cell phone did was make phone calls? Now, you can waste all kinds of time with smartphone apps that allow you to do everything from playing Scrabble to exercising. Smartphones, iPads and MP3 players are excellent resources for home exercisers, particularly if you find yourself getting bored from doing the same old thing, day after day. With the right apps, you can find guided workouts, paced music, timers and more, all of which can add variety and fun to your home workouts.
Planning and preparation are important when you're getting started with exercise, but to be successful, you also need momentum—and the more you can create, the easier it is to stay motivated. The best way to build and maintain momentum is with action. While it's great to ponder your weight-loss goals, think about motivation, and work on your commitment to exercise, there's something to be said for just doing it—before too much contemplation drains your energy. It's easy to spend too much time researching, reading, and exploring rather than actually doing the exercise.
An early detailed documentation of a Western mind–body exercise philosophy was created in the late 18th century by Swedish medical gymnastics teacher Pehr Henrik Ling (1766–1839), who is remembered as the father of Swedish Gymnastics. Ling developed an apparatus-free method to improve functional movement and concurrently address the concept of prevention and healing of human diseases.4 Bakewell S. Illustrations from the Wellcome Institute Library: Medical gymnastics and the Cyriax collection. Med Hist. 1997;41:487–95.10.1017/S0025727300063067[Crossref], [PubMed], [Web of Science ®] [Google Scholar] His early age rheumatism, experiences as a Fencing Master and his studies of medicine at Uppsala University influenced his ideas on the remedial benefits of physical training.5 Brodin H. Per Henrik Ling and his impact on gymnastics. Sven Med Tidskr. 2008;12(1):61–8.[PubMed] [Google Scholar] His 1853 book ‘Gymnastic Free Exercises’ stated: ‘It cannot be denied that the art of preventing disease is far preferable to that of curing it.’6 Ling PH. The gymnastic free exercises. Boston (MA): Ticknor, Reed and Fields; 1853. [Google Scholar] Ling regarded his ‘gymnastic free exercises’ as one of two separate yet related systems; the other being competitive gymnastics and athletics. Together, these two systems defined what became the Physical Culture or Gymnasium Movement of the 19th century.5,7 Brodin H. Per Henrik Ling and his impact on gymnastics. Sven Med Tidskr. 2008;12(1):61–8.
Recruiting lasted 6 months starting from September 2013. Participants were recruited by means of family doctors to whom the goal of the study was explained. The recruitment flow chart is shown in Figure 1. Three hundred and fifty people aged ≥ 65 were invited to participate. Of these, 51.4% agreed to be included in the screening list while 48.6% refused to participate, mainly for family reasons such as illness/hospitalization/old age of a family member. Forty people were found eligible to participate in the research protocol. Randomly, twenty were assigned to VE and twenty to the control group. The latter were instructed not to take part in any physical activity throughout the study period. All the selected participants signed an informed consent. The study was performed according to the Declaration of Helsinki and approved by the local ethics committee on September 23, 2013.