Research has shown brisk walking can stop and even reverse brain shrinkage (aka atrophy). Brain atrophy begins in your forties and seems to have the greatest impact on regions responsible for memory and higher cognition. The good news is that aerobic exercise, such as brisk walking (aka heart pumping exercise) increases both gray matter and white matter. Gray matter are your actual neurons. White matter are the connections between neurons.
Since none of us really want to be hot and sweaty especially during our work routine the Heart Rate Optimization is the perfect solution. Begin by standing up. Clear a minimum of a 3 foot radius of your body. Now, shift your weight from left to right without letting your feet leave the floor. Do this a quickly as you can for 5 to 15 seconds. Your body will wiggle ridiculously. But you should boost your heart rate pretty quickly.
When you are able to complete a full 15 seconds of weight shifting without feeling winded then add a 5 to 30 second round of fast walking in place. The goal is to walk at a moderate intensity which would translate to 50 steps per 30 seconds or about 1.667 steps per second.
Once you can do a full 15 seconds of weight shifting followed by 30 seconds of fast walking in place you can add fast high stepping.
For this, you will actually use the good old fashioned cartoon inspired running in place now known as Fast High Stepping.
We suggest you invest in a pedometer for best results.
From a standing position (with a pedometer on your left foot), set your timer for 35 to 65 seconds. The extra 5 seconds are there to let you get into position. Then stand tall with your feet hip width apart. Bend your arms to just less than 90° and raise your right knee up high enough to touch your right hand, place it back down and repeat with your left. Continue doing this while increasing your pace.
As you become more efficient, you can gradually increase your elbow angle to 130°. Also, remember if you suffer with CTS symptoms turn your palms up.
Count how many times your right knee touches your right hand and how many steps you take with your dominate leg.
Our Fast High Stepping routine includes light impact for your hands to help improve bone density. While not directly linked to arthritis, individuals with lower bone density in and around arthritic joints experience more pain and a greater loss of mobility than those with greater bone density. Individuals who perform repetitive tasks with their hands are more likely to develop arthritis in hand and finger joints. We figure why not do something to mitigate this.
If you keep track and post your totals on the Code Monkey Health Heart Rate Tracking page you could receive a healthy gift. We randomly choose a participant every 6 weeks and send them a treat. You will have to register with the site to participate. Registration is free.
(The Complete Guide is also available on GitHub)