sexta-feira, maio 04, 2018

Samsung Steps Challenge: Desert (April)

Participants: 1 319 304 (from all over the world)
My place at the end:16 234th (first 2%)
My number of steps: 572 219
Distance = 572 219 / 1320 = 433,5 Km
My Number of steps per day: 572 219/30 = 19 074 (*)

In my 20s, I used to run a lot. When I say a lot, I MEAN A LOT!! I'd go for 10 km runs before breakfast. Why? Because running was fun (still is). I suspect that most people who enjoy running don't sit down first to work through the comparative health benefits but instead just put their shoes on and go. As fast as they can. I stopped running when my left knee got busted up. Instead I took up walking (second best game in town).

I used to think if I didn't run, really hard, for at least 40 minutes I was wasting time. But after stopping training and putting on weight I decided to walk. Nothing too brisk. More importantly I just felt more relaxed and realised my mind and body really looked forward to those walks.

The major dilemma for automobile users who can't be bothered to exercise by walking up to the shops, is whether to walk or run to the car. I think running would prove the more effective in such short distances. For others who are too lazy to go outside at all, it might be good for them to walk or run to the bathroom (after making sure the floor is dry though), or to the clothes-line and back. This could save billions in the cost of treating heart disease (but perhaps more in treating domestic accidents).Anyway, the overall benefits for all lazy people everywhere is potentially massive (bigger than their fat arse).

We have known for decades that appetite exceeds calorie needs in the sedentary, when you exercise moderately your appetite more closely matches your calorie needs, You are forgetting that they need more as they are exercising. When you exercise a lot you actually need to consciously eat to get enough. I was there in my youth running 100miles/week.

The myth that you do not lose weight is because the fat deposit you lose first is hidden: visceral fat that coats the organs and is the most dangerous form of fat. You lose that and at the same time you increase lean muscle mass and get denser bones. The scales then show no change when there has been significant and beneficial change. Recent research also shows that exercised muscle releases a hormone like substance which turns on brown fat to burn fat to produce just heat and turns white fat into brown thus raising the body temperature. Exercise also inhibits appetite for a couple of hours afterwards so if you run before tea you eat less, in relation to your calorie needs. Apparently if you run on an empty stomach first thing you also burn more fat while running.

Running or brisk walking the exact same distance both expend the same amount of energy, calorie for calorie. Walking, obviously, just takes a longer time. The main difference is that running stresses the heart much more. So, if you have the time, walk. Less stress, same exercise value, and you have time to enjoy the scenery. According to the website, a 90 Kg man would burn 100 calories walking 1.6 km at a pace of 5 kph (total exercise duration = 20 minutes). The same man would burn 151 calories running a mile at a pace of 10 kph (total exercise duration = 10 minutes). So a 60 min, 5 km walk (300kcal) compares pretty neatly (energy-wise) to a 20 min jog (302kcal). However, as the health benefits are 'doubled' for walking then the jogger needs to go twice as far. So we're left with an hours walk being equal to a 40 min jog. That leaves it all down to what you prefer doing and how much time you have on your hands.

(number of steps on the 1st of April; and no, it was not an April Fool's Joke...; I was at the beach at the time and I enjoyed stretching myself a bit...)

Walking is remarkably efficient, on level, firm ground, the energy required to maintain forward momentum is constantly stored and released by the tendons and muscles acting in concert to store and release energy as you move along. You can see this effect very clearly in young, slim dogs, they visibly bounce along, and if you doubt the effect, walk on dry, soft sand. That has the effect of absorbing your momentum at every step by deforming by an amount exactly corresponding to your momentum so that it is lost to your usual gait with the effect that every step has to accelerate your mass from rest. Worse still, it cannot supply an equal and opposite force to your leg power until it is further compressed by that action so thay you are in effect moving sand as much as moving forward.

So, you can walk for miles on firm ground and expend very little energy, as long as you can lope along at a constant speed and level. Walking uphill is (obviously) doing more work, to maintain the same forward momentum, you have to increase your rate of work (power output) by an amount proportional to the sine of the angle of the slope times your weight which might sound like too much calculation but it starts off fairly gently then rapidly increases by thirty degrees it is one half. That is, if you could walk up a thirty degree slope with the same forward speed as you walk on the level, you are doing extra work equivalent to lifting half of your weight through the height of the increase in elevation per step at every step. That is roughly running up stairs, most staircases being somewhere around thirty degrees. The trouble I find with brisk walking, as opposed to running, is that after a while I start to want to run anyway...

So the best way to exercise by walking, if the object is to work out gently and train for increased fitness, stamina, lose weight or that sort of thing, as well as enjoying life the while is to find the sort of hill you can plod up without too much discomfort, then keep on walking up more and more hills.

We were not meant to be inactive. I believe it actually damages our psyche: popping some music on in my ears, and just walking. During the day, I’ll generally spend any free time I have outdoors walking. It gives me time to think, helps me relax, and during the week it gives me time away from my desk. Exercise is a spectrum. Each has its own specifics in terms of benefit. All exercise improves your life if done comfortably and well. More importantly I just felt more relaxed and realised my mind and body really looked forward to those walks. I think I'll just keep going for walks and not fret about all of this added complexity, put one foot in front of the other, maintain a brisk pace when you feel like it, dawdle when you feel like dawdling, breathe in the air and relax the mind whilst moving the body. This approach to getting fit is wrong headed. Just get outside and walk. Left foot, right foot and the body will follow. Repeat. Aim for 5.0 to 5.5 kph on average (that's what I do). Preferably on field paths so your whole body wiggles around as you stop yourself tripping over. I used to think if you didn't run, really hard, for at least 40 minutes you were wasting time. But after stopping training and putting on weight I decided to walk but nothing too brisk.

Exercise is a spectrum. Each has its own specifics in terms of benefit. All exercise improves your life if done comfortably and well.

Bottom-line: One of the main advantages of walking is that most walkers don't feel the need to dress like attention seeking arseholes by wearing skin tight lycra and bright lemon or orange tops...

Or, if you don't want to walk do this instead:

RUN to the cake shop.
EAT cake.
WALK home


5 comentários:

Book Stooge disse...

A very timely post. Mrs B and I are now walking every saturday through a local cemetery. It has nice paths that roll up and down and it is quiet.

Thankfully, during the week I get more than enough exercise through work alone. I really don't know what I'd do if I had a sedentary job. Probably be fat and almost dead from my diabetes not being under control :-(

Manuel Antão disse...

In May I've already started the Lavanda challenge. Are you there? Moniker or something else?

Book Stooge disse...

I don't understand your question. Am I where? What is "moniker or something else"?

Manuel Antão disse...

To participate in the Samsung Challenge you've got to enroll on it.

Book Stooge disse...

Ahhh, gotcha. No, I am not participating. I don't do things like that...