Burning fat and getting gains are two requirements that come to mind when sculpting the perfect summer body. With a plethora of fitness options at our fingertips, it can be disorienting to identify the right program for you. High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is one that has stood out among the many for its simple, yet effective routine over recent years — and it looks like it’s here to stay. From the get go, it may seem like cardio is the winning trait keeping this regimen alive, but there are a few other benefits up its sleeve that proves HIIT is more than just a fat killer.
Cutting an extremely high number of calories in a short period of time sounds like a good gig, and has always been a huge factor of HIIT’s immense popularity within the industry. As its name suggests, HIITS is all about giving your body a high-impact interval work out with very short periods of rest. An example would be to commit to a minute non-stop push-ups. After the minute, take 15 seconds of rest before moving on to the next set. Sets are highly dependent on the individual, ranging from three to even a dozen.
From the get go, one of its biggest appeals is its accessibility when you’re tight for time. HIIT is a system you can easily incorporate to many other anaerobic workouts. Climbing stairs, burpees, lunges and other exercises are easily done without the need for fancy gyms or expensive equipment. Its accessibility also holds true because of its non-existent barrier of entry: with nothing but a few exercises in mind, beginners can incorporate intensive intervals without the training needed for more advanced anaerobic activities like swimming and running.
Despite the consensus of being a program of weight loss, HIIT’s ability to be used in various activities also prevent muscle mass from taking a huge hit.
Having a little bit of muscles is a common goal for many, but when cardio is in play, there is always the worry of losing the results after months of hard work at the gym. Burst workouts, especially static exercises cause muscle hypotrophy due to concentrated spurts of activity, much like weightlifting. Although it doesn’t compare to the growth you see at the gym, its highly intensive properties prevent your muscle fibers from leaning out.
Whether it’s something simple like stair-climbing or the traditional burpees, giving yourself bursts of exertion will bring your body to a state called “Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC). This post-exercise period is a process that happens when the body recovers from vigorous workouts, consuming a higher amount of oxygen that ultimately requires more energy output. Furthermore, intensive intervals require more energy for recovery, burning 15% more calories than many other cardio workouts. Not only does this boost your metabolism overtime, but spending more energy ties in well with muscle stimulation and effective circulation.
So let’s recap: you don’t need a lot of time, you aren’t restricted to a particular atmosphere for a good workout, you melt calories effectively and get to avoid drastic muscle loss while doing it. HIITS can seem like much for the unprepared, but by setting realistic targets every session and enough practice, your hard work WILL pay off.
If one arm temporarily immobilized due to injury, people still can increase the muscle strength and reduce muscle loss without touching it by doing exercise in the opposite one, Australian researchers reported on Thursday.
The study conducted by researchers from Edith Cowan University (ECU) in Australia and their international colleagues could lead to a new way of rehabilitation and improve outcomes for post-injury and stroke patients.
During the study, researchers made experiments on 30 participants who had one arm immobilized for a minimum of 8 hours a day for four weeks.
Some of them were instructed to do a mix of eccentric and concentric exercises, some with eccentric exercise only and the rest of them had no excise at all.
In eccentric exercises, the contracting muscle is lengthening, such as when lowering a dumbbell in bicep curls, sitting on a chair slowly or walking downstairs. While in concentric exercises, muscles are shortening such as when lifting a dumbbell or walking upstairs.
A researcher, Prof. Ken Nosaka from ECU's School of Medical and Health Sciences said the group that only performed the eccentric exercise on their active arm showed an increase in strength and a decrease in muscle wastage, in their immobilized arm.
"Participants who did eccentric exercise had the biggest increase in strength in both arms, so it has a very powerful cross-transfer effect," Nosaka said.
"I think this could change the way we approach rehabilitation for people who have temporarily lost the use of one arm or one leg," he added.
"By starting rehab and exercise in the uninjured limb right away, we can prevent muscle damage induced by exercise in the other limb and also build strength without moving it at all," he noted.
Nosaka said he is hopeful their findings could also help a wider range of people with immobility problems due to injury or sickness.
"In the future, we hope to look at how eccentric exercise can help improve motor function, movement and fine muscle control, which is particularly important for stroke and rehabilitation patients," he said.
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The British government's science advisers have warned that reinfections with COVID-19 are "to be expected" as the virus continues to spread in the country.
The conclusion by researchers on the COVID-19 Genomics UK Consortium is based on what is known about people's immunity to other coronaviruses that cause the common cold, according to a report by The Guardian newspaper on Saturday.
It was unclear how soon people who had recovered from COVID-19 could become vulnerable to reinfection, but emerging reports showed the timeframe was "relatively short", said the report.
Currently, there are seven types of coronavirus that infect humans. Among them, Sars, Mers and Sars-Cov-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 are considered the deadliest. The four others cause common colds and can reinfect people six months after they have recovered from the same virus, according to the report.
Nearly two dozen cases of suspected or confirmed COVID-19 reinfections emerged across the globe, but the real number is thought to be far higher, since most reinfections are not recorded, said the report.
Another 16,171 people in Britain have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total number of coronavirus cases in the country to 705,428, according to official figures released Saturday.
The coronavirus-related deaths in Britain rose by 150 to 43,579, the data showed.
Britain's coronavirus reproduction number, also known as the R number, has edged up slightly, the latest government figures showed Friday.
The government's Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) said the R number is now between 1.3 and 1.5, up from last week which was between 1.2 and 1.5. If the R number is above one, it means the number of cases will increase exponentially.
To bring life back to normal, countries, such as Britain, China, Russia and the United States are racing against time to develop coronavirus vaccines.
SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, has the capacity to affect brain tissue and the structure of the cortex, a region of the brain responsible for functions such as memory, consciousness, and language, according to a Brazilian study released on Thursday.
According to the study, the coronavirus can affect astrocytes, the most abundant cells in the central nervous system, which perform functions such as providing support and nutrients for neurons and regulating the concentration of neurotransmitters and other substances, such as potassium.
"We demonstrated for the first time that the SARS-CoV-2 virus infects and replicates in astrocytes and this can decrease the viability of neurons," said Daniel Martins de Souza, a professor at the Institute of Biology at the University of Campinas (Unicamp).
"The infection of this cell type was confirmed through experiments done with brain tissue from 26 patients who died from COVID-19," the study said.
According to Martins de Souza, scientists used a technique known as immunohistochemistry, which involves using antibodies to detect certain antigens in a tissue sample.
The presence of the virus was confirmed in 26 of the samples studied, and in five of them, certain alterations were found that suggested possible damage to the central nervous system.
Eighty-one other patients with mild COVID-19 symptoms were also studied. The results showed a third of them exhibiting neurological or neuropsychiatric symptoms, such as memory impairment, fatigue, headache, anxiety, and others, 60 days after acquiring the disease.
The study was conducted by scientists from Unicamp and the University of Sao Paulo (USP), with collaboration from scientists at the National Laboratory of Biosciences, the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, and the D'Or Institute.
Forty percent of the world’s population – or 3 billion people – do not have a handwashing facility with water and soap at home, according to new estimates from UNICEF.
The number is much higher in least developed countries, where nearly three-quarters of the population lack such facilities although the pandemic has highlighted the critical role of hand hygiene in disease prevention.
Kelly Ann Naylor, Associate Director of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene at UNICEF, said that it is “unacceptable” that the most vulnerable communities are unable to use the simplest of methods to protect themselves and their loved ones.
“The pandemic has highlighted the critical role of hand hygiene in disease prevention. It has also stressed a pre-existing problem for many: Handwashing with soap remains out of reach for millions of children where they’re born, live and learn.”
“We must take immediate action to make handwashing with soap accessible to everyone, everywhere – now and in the future,” she urged.
The situation is also alarming at schools: 43 per cent of schools globally (70 per cent in least developed countries) lack a handwashing facility with water and soap, affecting hundreds of millions of school-age children, according to the estimates.
‘Hand Hygiene for All’
Against this backdrop, UNICEF, along with the UN World Health Organization launched the “Hand Hygiene for All” initiative to support the development of national roadmaps to accelerate and sustain progress towards making hand hygiene a mainstay in public health interventions.
This means rapidly improving access to handwashing facilities, water, soap and hand sanitizer in all settings, as well as promoting behavioural change interventions for optimal hand hygiene practices, said UNICEF.
The initiative brings together international, national, and local partners, to ensure affordable products and services are available and sustainable, especially in vulnerable and disadvantaged communities.
The estimates were released on Thursday, coinciding with Global Handwashing Day, which serves as a platform to raise awareness on the importance of handwashing with soap.