It's Not Too Late to Resolve to Work Out… Less?

The New York Times

I'm a solid 6-workouts-a-week kind of girl (and I'd probably do 7 if my Thursday schedule wasn't wonky), but if The New York Times says I should work out less frequently, then perhaps I should take heed. Think of all the extra time I'll have to clean!

Or read, more likely. In The New York Times last week, Gretchen Reynolds reported on a study in which women age 60-74 worked out either 2, 4, or 6 times per week. All three groups gained strength and endurance, but the most impressive gains were in the 4 workouts/week group. In fact, the 2 and 4 workouts/week groups burned far more calories per day than the 6 workouts/week group! What a crazy world we live in..

I enjoy working out near-daily, and as I live alone, I have a bit more time to spend however I like. (Not that you can't be hardcore with a live-in love or a family — but they can be wonderfully distracting.) As good and centered as my workouts make me feel, I can identify with the 6 times/week group in the study, who reported feeling pressed for time. Walking to the pool, taking the bus to work, working, and then walking home can add up to a 12+-hour day, and a tiring one at that. It's no wonder my laundry is piling up! What a relief, then, to hear that if I decide to cut down a bit someday, my body might actually benefit. (However, the one thing about the study that I take with a grain of salt is the age of the participants: at half their average age, I might respond a bit differently to frequent exercise than they do.)

Has it ever occurred to you to start intentionally working out less?! If you've made the switch, how has it impacted your home life? Is your apartment spotless, or are you restless?

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