University of Utah researchers documented the contention that short brief periods of intense physical exertion are as effective in controlling weight and losing weight as the National Institute of Health’s recommended 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity per week in an article published in the Sept. 1, 2013, issue of the American Journal of Health Promotion.
The researchers found that men exceeded the recommended levels of physical activity by 61 percent on average while women averaged six minutes less than the recommended 150 minutes of vigorous physical activity weekly. The higher rates for men can be attributed to more men being involved in physical jobs like construction.
On average less than five percent of people in the United States get the recommended amount of exercise necessary to avoid being overweight or obese.
A subset of 2,202 women and 2,309 men between the ages of 18 and 64 years were taken from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) and monitored with accelerometers for seven days. Accelerometers capture and record the levels of physical exertion.
The researchers found that ten minute bouts of physical activity were as effective in maintaining weight and reducing weight as longer periods of intense exercise.
On average the reduction in per each additional minute of exercise that women of equal weight and height experienced was one half of a pound