A healthy alternative to joining the after-holiday herd
January 5, 2011 Leave a comment
After the fatty holiday season many Americans talk about what they are going to do to get back in shape. They make resolutions, join gyms, start taking boxing classes (myself), start a running ritual, and put themselves through other crazy regimens in the beginning of the year. These new rituals usually last about a month or two until they are lost and forgotten.
Recent research shows that while 52% of participants in a resolution study were confident of success with their new years resolution goals, only 12% actually achieved their goals. A separate study in 2007 by Richard Wisemen from the University of Bristol showed that 78% of those who set New Year resolutions fail.
Why has this become such a tradition? Is it because it is acceptable to society? I think one of the most interesting questions that need to be brought to the forefront is…is someone making money off of this? Of course they are. Gym’s usually see over a 100% increase in daily sign ups for the first couple of weeks into the new year. You also see cheesy commercials like this one for GNC promoting their “Holiday Edition” products. These guys are making a killing on our habits.
Isn’t there an alternative solutions to all of this? A recent study done by the Journal of Psychology says there is.
Exercising before breakfast suggests a more reliable and far simpler pre-emptive response. Run or ride a bike before breakfast. Exercising in the morning, before eating, the study results show, seems to significantly lessen the ill effects of holiday weight gain and remorse.
The study was conducted over a six week period in Belgium and included 28 active and healthy young men. Some men in the study agreed to not exercise and the remaining agreed to exercise 4 days a week.
To sum up the study, the men that did not exercise gained 6 pounds, had insulin resistance and fat-marbled muscles, which are metabolically unhealthy conditions that can be precursors of diabetes. Read more here.
So HEY! Next holiday season…you might want to go with the pre-emptive strike. It might save you a few headaches and some money.