Archive for the tag - busted

Debunking the 20-Minute Exercise Myth!

Dear Davey,

I remember a “myth” from a few years back when I started exercising: When doing cardio exercise, you have to work for at least 20-30 minutes to get into the fat burning zone. In other words, it takes at least 20 minutes to start losing weight.

It sounds like a myth that is not true, but I just wanted to confirm.

From,
Damian

Damian,

Good nose! You were able to sniff out a very pervasive myth. And yes, it’s totally untrue.

The myth probably started based on a misinterpretation of actual science. During the early stages of cardio, your body does rely more on carbohydrates than fat. The longer you exercise, the more your body shifts from carbohydrates to fat. But really, you’re getting a tremendous benefit from each stage of exercise.

Moreover, the 20-minute myth ignores the bigger boost that your metabolism gets from exercise. Much of the exercise-induced calorie-burning happens when you get off the treadmill – especially if you maximize your cardio with interval training.

Need some solid proof to finally put this myth to rest? Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine looked at two groups of exercisers. Group 1 performed a single session of exercise for 20 – 40 minutes. Group 2 performed the same amount of exercise, but broken up into 10 minute sessions over the course of the day. According to the 20-minute exercise myth, group 2 shouldn’t see any weight loss. But, just the opposite held true; participants in group 2 lost an average of 20 pounds, compared to 14 pounds in group 1.

And for what it’s worth, my current cardio routine usually lasts 15 minutes.

The bottom line: The 20-minute myth is entirely untrue.