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How Endurance Training Benefits Your Physical and Mental Health

By January 24, 2014 No Comments

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In anticipation of the start of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, a few of our Flywheel instructors got inspired to lead longer “endurance” classes, aimed at pushing our riders to their maximum ability. What’s the benefit of these lengthier workouts? Through long hours of training, our Olympic athletes sharpen their competitive edge with perseverance, persistence, patience and confidence. Get sweating like Team USA by throwing down in these long classes and develop some pretty serious physical and mental benefits  of your own:

THE PHYSICAL:
Burn more calories, all day:  Besides the extra hour of torching calories in class, endurance exercise can result in lower appetite perceptions in the hours after exercise, resulting in a greater 24 hour energy deficit.

Burn more FAT: Peak fat oxidation during exercise increases with high-dose endurance training and endurance cycling by specifically increasing transporters that shuttle fatty acid directly into your muscle!

Fight aging: Life-long endurance exercise has been shown to prevent the shortening of telomeres – the protective ends of your DNA – as you age. Not only does this delay the aging process, but may also fend off cancer and other age-related disorders as you get older.

THE MENTAL:
De-Stress: Long bouts of exercise seem to give us a chance to practice dealing with stress by truly connecting all the body’s systems in the most productive and beneficial ways. This positive biologic communication can actually help reduce anxiety by hardwiring internal coping strategies throughout the entire day!

Keeps your brain sharp: Endurance exercise training improves memory by targeting chemicals in your brain and, over time, will reduce the progression of age-related cognitive decline.

Build Resilience: Resilience is the ability to withstand, recover, and grow in the face of the demands of our lives. Physical training, particularly long duration aerobic exercise has been shown to drastically increase mental toughness and hardiness!

To prepare for these longer classes, do like Team USA does – get plenty of rest the night in advance, eat high quality food, drink water before, during and after your class, and refuel with protein and healthy carbohydrate and protein after your cool down. A banana, small smoothie, or fresh juice will hit the spot without blowing all those extra calories you just burned!

Here’s what FlyBarre instructors Khori and Brandon fuel up on before a longer workout:

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Did you know January is Mental Health Awareness Month? Here are 7 ways to take care of your mental health.

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