Maybe you’re already walking thirty minutes a day, maybe more. So when the basic brain health advice of getting out for a walk every day is offered, you say to yourself, “I already do that.” OK. That’s fair enough. There’s a strong link between exercise and brain fitness so let’s up the ante with a more difficult challenge. Let’s talk about high-intensity workouts. High intensity exercise makes your brain both stronger and more efficient.
What Are High-Intensity Workouts?
Did you know that you can do a high-intensity workout in less than 10 minutes? That’s time well spent when using high intensity exercise for brain benefits!
You can do it at home or in your office, between meetings, while the laundry is drying, or after lunch. All it takes is a dynamic warm-up, 3 to 4 full-body exercises, and a couple of minutes of stretching afterward.
Best Exercise for a High-Intensity Workout
The Squat-to-Press is one quick and efficient exercise that will get you into great shape. It requires two dumbbells – 3, 5, or 10 pounds, depending on your fitness level.
Focus on your core while you do it, keeping your abdominal muscles engaged.
How to Do a Squat-to-Press Exercise
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and a dumbbell in each hand. Bend your arms up toward your shoulders, palms facing toward each other. Lower your body into a squat position.
Your knees should not bow out over your toes. Your chest should almost touch the top of your thighs, and your elbows should nearly touch your knees.
Now, press up through your heels and rise to a standing position. At the same time, reach your arms up straight above your head. Then return to a squat position, lowering your arms to their original position.
Repeat 10 times.
Exercises to Use in High-Intensity Workouts
Alternate high-intensity, full-body exercises like the Squat-to-Press with running sprints (1-10 sets of 50 to 100 yards) or jumping rope, and you’ve got a complete workout.
If your fitness level allows, try this for the next 4 to 6 weeks, 3 to 6 times a week on non-consecutive days. If you’re a beginner, start with 1-2 sets 3 days a week and gradually increase by adding either an extra set or an extra sprint each week for the next 4 to 6 weeks.
Let me know how it goes!
If you feel stuck and need additional support to adopt a new healthy habit or routine, consider working with me. We can partner up in setting goals, drawing on your skills and strengths, and implementing strategies to help you find your way to lasting healthy success.
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For over 15 years, Shelli has been a freelance writer and wellness coach on Joyinmovement. She writes about brain fitness, creating a healthy lifestyle, traveling the world, and making positive habits stick. Stop procrastinating! Take action, join her free newsletter.