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Four days of exercise per week more effective than six


Four days of exercise per week more effective than six

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When it comes to fitness and weight loss, four workouts per week may actually be more beneficial than six or more, reports. A group of 72 sedentary women between the ages of 60 - 74 were taken on by researchers from the University of Alabama. The subjects were then split into groups and asked to follow different training regimes over the course of a 16-week period. The researchers soon found that those who worked out for four days a week burned more calories per session than those exercising for six days a week. Whilst those exercising nearly every day burned more calories over the course of the week, each session saw marginally fewer gains than those who curtailed their training at four days. In addition, those who attended the gym for six days a week complained it took too much out of their free time and therefore made them less likely to undertake any physical exercise at times when they weren't at the gym, such as taking the stairs if an elevator was available. Elsewhere, when looking at strength levels, there was virtually no difference between the two groups whatsoever at the end of the 16-week trial - meaning those who own a garden gym may actually be best to leave it be for three days a week. Commenting on the findings, lead researcher Dr Gary Hunter explained how for some people, less may be more - as scaling it back a little can better energy expenditure and promote feelings of physical capability. "All groups increased fat-free mass, strength and aerobic fitness, and decreased fat mass," he told


David Howells

19th February 2013