Chiropractic is more than just spinal adjustments. It is a whole-body therapy that may include health supplements, dietary adjustments, and lifestyle changes that include exercise. By getting the patient to take certain steps, chiropractors make them a vital participant in their own healing.
Exercise is outstanding for not only healing, but also for prevention of injury and certain health conditions. Regular exercise helps to reduce weight, improve flexibility, mobility, and balance, build muscle, and increase stamina. However, most people do not get enough exercise. The main reason they give is that they do not have the time. There is an exercise method, though, that can get incredible results in just 12 minutes a day, or less – High Intensity Interval Training, or HIIT.
What is HIIT?
High intensity interval training is an exercise method that involves alternating segments of a high intensity activity and a low intensity activity.
After a 2 minute warm up you may try any of these HIIT exercises:
- Sprint for 1 minute, walk for 2 minutes – repeat several times
- On a stationary bike, pedal as fast as you can for 30 seconds, then slow it down a bit for about 1 minute – repeat several times.
- Jump rope double time for 30 seconds, then jump-walk for 1 minute
The thing that makes HIIT so appealing to so many patients is its adaptability Patients can adapt it to any fitness activity that they enjoy doing. It also works much faster than most traditional exercise methods. Where most exercises must be done for an hour or more, HIIT only requires about 15 – 12 minutes and it provides a great cardo workout so it helps to increase metabolism.
Patients will see noticeable improvements in just a few weeks, including weight loss, increased endurance, and more strength. It doesn’t require any equipment unless the patient wants to use a bike, kettle bell, jump rope, or other devices to enhance their workout. The patient is also always in complete control. They can decide the workout level and intensity that is right for them.
Benefits of HIIT
There are several tremendous benefits of HIIT, including the obvious weight loss and fitness related perks. A 2012 presentation at the European Society of Cardiology, though revealed another interesting benefit. Exercise activates an enzyme, telomerase, which slows the again process. HIIT stimulates the release of telomerase while at the same time reducing p53 expression, a protein that promotes premature aging.
In other words, HIIT can actually help to slow or arrest the aging process. Other “youth oriented” benefits of HIIT include:
- Improved muscle tone
- More energy
- Firmer skin
- Lower body fat
- Increased libido
- Fewer wrinkles
HIIT can also help to balance certain hormones in the body that contribute to unhealthy eating habits (such as stress eating) and weight gain. The hormones leptin and ghrelin are responsible for weight. Ghrelin, the “hunger hormone,” is what is often responsible for giving you “the munchies” and causing cravings for salty, sweet, and fried foods. Leptin is the hormone that alerts your body when you’ve had enough to eat. It gives that full signal. When these two hormones are not acting as they should, it can result in obesity and other problems.
Staying fit and healthy is integral to maintaining a strong body and spine. This is why HIIT is so often recommended by chiropractors. It helps to get the body strong, fit, and healthy so that when problems arise it can be a major contributor in healing itself. If you need to drop a few pounds or just want to be more fit, talk to your chiropractor about HIIT and get results fast.