Health and Fitness

Exercise recommendations

This week I am in Chicago for the American osteopathic Association house of delegates. It’s an invaluable week in which hundreds of osteopathic physicians from around the country come together to discuss public policy. We are able to give recommendations on a wide variety of topics including healthcare, advocacy, and a topic that is near and dear to my heart, exercise and rehabilitation

Recent articles in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association as well as Self magazine discuss exercise recommendations. We, as Osteopathic Physicians need to know accurate up-to-date information to pass on the appropriate recommendations to our patients.

In general, for optimal health, adults should log at least 150 minutes a week of moderate intensity aerobic activity. It may be decreased to 75 minutes a week of vigorous intensity aerobic activity if you’re able to do that. You should then give yourself a day off between each high intensity training session.

For strength gains, three days of total body resistance training a week, is a great approach. If you want to go to the gym, or work out every day, then you should alternate different muscle groups, aerobic, and resistance strength training. You should be able to allow at least 48 hours hours of rest between training specific muscle groups so they have time to recover.

Some things just can’t be rushed. Look out for the classic symptoms of overtraining. If you’re constantly revving up your body with too much high intensity work, your central nervous system may get overwhelmed. This may result in poor sleep quality, bad moods, mental status changes as well as digestive difficulties. Try to keep moving throughout the day and change positions but remember to allow your body time to rebuild itself and for each specific high intensity activity there should be at least a 48 hour break before it is repeated.

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