I had a nice workout today. All told, the workout lasted about an hour: from 1:15 PM to 2:15 PM. The weather was beautiful: 61 deg F; 52% humidity; sunny.
The workout I did was informed by math and science, by reading, researching, and reasoning on health, fitness and nutrition. Following the theory of Art DeVany’s power curve (see also pp. 10-13 of Dr. Art Devany‘s Evolutionary Fitness paper), the exercises involved some high-intensity work to work fast-twitch muscle and stress the body (briefly), but also some medium- and low-intensity work to work slow-twitch muscle and relax. So the workout had both “aerobic” and “anaerobic” elements.
The brief high-intensity work develops muscle strength and improves cardiovascular health but does not last long enough to do the damage to joints (e.g., chronic wear) that long-distance running, etc. does. What’s more, the high-intensity work allows you to keep focused, especially when you think about your technique and environment. When doing long-distance running, one’s mind drifts off what one is doing; long-distance seems to, psychologically if not physiologically, separate mind from body. Short, intense work seems to develop better nerve-muscle and thought-action integration. And it improves your reflexes and decreases your reaction time.
What you do in the medium- and short-intensity work is constantly changing, so you have to constantly keep focus. You might be walking, for example, but you walk along a board for balance. Or you might go down in push-up position slowly, having in mind that you are about to explode upwards for some brief high-intensity work. — There is a great deal of physics and math involved behind the scenes!
This exercise session was done barefoot. Running and walking barefoot — in a safe environment!! — lets you (and forces you to) place your feet in a way that it better for you chiropractically. With shoes, you can extend your foot out too much, unnaturally stretching or twisting your spine, hips, joints, etc. The damage might not occur short-term, but it could occur through chronic wear long-term.
And the session was done shirtless to increase exposure to sunlight (not just face and hands, but also arms, legs, feet, chest, and back) and thereby increase vitamin D production by the body. As the sphere we call the earth is turned so that our section of the sphere receives sunlight at a shallower angle than it does during the summer, we need to be out in the sun longer (than in the summer) to achieve optimal vitamin D production.
First up was six 100-yard sprints: 50 yards, touch a tree, sprint back. I walked around between sprints. The more sprints I did, the more I’d walk. I’d go from the bench in the foreground to the tree (in the distance) making a v-shape (it’s next to the tree with the big crown; look straight back from the left end of the bench).
Next — after walking around a bit — I did a 40-yard bear crawl, a 40-yard crab crawl, a 40-yard backward bear crawl, a 40-yard backward crab crawl, and a 40-yard bear crawl switching constantly between sideways left, sideways right, forward, backward, and hopping like a frog.
Then — again, after some walking — came 2 sets of 20 crawl push-ups.
After that, in some order or other, I also walked around the black rubber border around the playground area. (See first picture.) I’d walk forward, walk backward, walk sideways left first, walk sideways right first. The monkey bars allowed me to do 2 sets of ten pull-ups (holding onto two bars). But the monkey bars also beckoned me to go forward across them (7 bars), turn around, and go forward back. I did the same thing but moving backwards (i.e., to move across the bars, I was reaching backward from the direction I was facing). The swing (waist-high) I jumped over 10 times. I ran (slow; like a jog) around the court yard, running over the picnic tables and jumping onto the seat then over the back of the benches. I found a tree with a nice limb coming out of the tree at a 20 deg or so angle, from about 6 and a half or 7 feet up the tree. I jumped up and grabbed it, then twisted myself at the hips so I could touch the tree (where the branch came out) with my feet. After 10 of those, I kept my feet on the tree, shimmied out along the branch a bit, then pulled myself up to the branch 10 times — like doing upside-down push-ups. Some of these exercises give you a whole-body workout: they are efficient ways of exercising. And they work the body more like it’s meant to be worked: as a whole — rather than as parts in isolation.
Dang, that was fun!! And it felt so good outside!! Sunshine, breeze, coolness; all experienced shoeless and shirtless.
I look forward to doing more tomorrow or Wednesday!!