5 Incredible Things About Exercise You Should Know


Producer’s note: Someone on Quora asked: What are some mind-blowing facts about exercise, fitness and working out? Here is one of the best answers that’s been pulled from the thread. Thank you to the team at Quora for making this happen!

1. You can get significantly more aerobic and anaerobic improvement from a 4-minute workout than a 60-minute workout. The 4-minute workout is called Tabata intervals, the original study is here, and the layman’s description is here.

2. 80% of gym memberships are unused.

3. Doing targeted exercises like situps and crunches will not get you a six-pack (they will strengthen your abs, but a six-pack is more about % body fat than about strength). This is not a secret to many people, but mind-blowing and surprising to many others.

4. As you improve your cardiovascular health, your resting heart rate becomes lower and lower. It’s pretty easy to get your resting heart rate under 60 bpm (beats per minute). Lance Armstrong’s heart beats at 32-34 bpm.

5. If you work out at a high intensity for 45 minutes, your body’s metabolism stays elevated for up for up to 14 hours. In addition to burning calories during the workout, your body will burn an extra 150-200 calories in the hours after a workout.

This comment originally appeared at Quora.