Exercising -- the right way

It has long been accepted knowledge that lasting success in losing weight is not possible without an integrated exercise program. Without consistent physical activity and the resulting increase in metabolism through the muscular system, it is difficult to stabilize weight loss.

Woman with headphones jogging in nature

Problems with untrained exercising

But how do you find the ideal exercise program? Many good intentions are given up after just a few training sessions because unexpected difficulties arise, such as knee problems. What starts as one problem -- obesity -- suddenly turns into two. It threatens to ruin a training program before one has even properly begun. When an untrained jogger runs -- and this applies not only to those overweight but also to those of normal weight -- the pressure in the knee joints increases to 2.5 to 3 times the body weight. If the thigh muscles as stabilizers of the knee joint are unprepared for this, knee joint problems will inevitably occur. Consultation with an orthopedic doctor is not very helpful in such a situation, but rather foresight. By observing the following rules, your efforts will be crowned with success.

Strength training

Before starting with an actual exercise, such as jogging, targeted strength training of certain muscle groups should be undertaken in order to increase the resilience of the joints. The act of sitting weakens eight muscle groups in particular, which should be taken into account in strength training: Back extensors, shoulder girdle, thigh extensors, forearm extensors, buttock muscles, abdominal muscles, foot flexors and upper arm extensors. The resulting muscle growth not only increases the load-bearing capacity of the joints, but also the basal metabolic rate created by the increase in muscle mass. In order to stimulate muscle growth, about 45 seconds of contraction time per muscle group is necessary.

Endurance training

Endurance training refers to exercise that responds to at least 1/6 of the muscle mass over a period of time. Classic endurance sports include jogging, walking or Nordic waking, swimming and cycling. In winter, cross-country skiing can be added. Endurance training improves the elasticity of the blood vessels and oxygen uptake, which in turn increases energy expenditure and promotes more fat burning in comparison to carbohydrate burning.

Training control and supercompensation

Here the principle of supercompensation plays an important role. Regardless of an individual's level of performance, super compensation is a prerequisite for success. When the body is under load, we call it "training." In this phase, the loaded muscles consume energy in order to be able to perform as required. Calories are burned and there is a noticeable heat development. Gradually the muscles tire until performance ends, and then the regeneration phase begins. Now the muscles retrieve used energy from the bloodstream and refill its energy stores. Every athlete recognizes the development of heat after exertion in the form of "after-sweating." Interestingly, the regeneration does not end at the initial level, but muscle memory builds up more reserves than it had before the load. This is an additional benefit after training, which can also be observed in untrained exercises. But only two days later, this effect is no longer detectable. Successful training must therefore be repeated after 2 to 3 days at the latest. This is the reason why at least three training periods a week have become established doctrine. The principle of supercompensation applies to competitive athletes as well as to untrained athletes. Even 80 year olds have been able to demonstrate muscle growth through such training.

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