I have been following Dr. Mercola for over a decade. He has the best Health Web Site on the Internet.
In this article he describes how exercise reseases Growth Hormone. He is basically saying that a short burst of high intensity exercise releases this hormone.
This can be done with a bicycle, as he suggests, or, it can be done in a more natural fashion by playing a fast sport, such as Raquetball, Tennis or Squash. Soccer is, of course, the best sport for sudden bursts of speed.
How Exercise Changes Your Biochemistry
In this study, the researchers measured the biochemical changes that occur during exercise, and found alterations in more than 20 different metabolites. Some of these compounds help you burn calories and fat, while others help stabilize your blood sugar, among other things.
Essentially, being of a healthy weight and exercising regularly creates a healthy feedback loop that optimizes and helps maintain healthy glucose and insulin levels through optimization of insulin receptor sensitivity.
And as I’ve explained on countless occasions, normalizing your insulin levels is the most important factor for optimizing your overall health and preventing disease of all kinds, from diabetes, to heart disease, to cancer, and everything in between.
This is also good news for those who are out of shape or overweight, because although it may take a little longer for you to correct your biochemistry, this same positive feedback loop will continue to create ever increasing health benefits as you persist and get fitter and leaner.
Best of all, just 10 minutes of BRISK exercise led to beneficial biochemical changes that were still measurable an hour later. And this is where what I have to say next comes into play.
Exercise to Increase Your Levels of the “Fitness Hormone”
One of the major reasons I am so enthusiastic about peak fitness is that it can actually increase your growth hormone level.
Yes, I realize that many athletes are injecting this illegally to achieve fitness, but it is expensive and fraught with side effects.
Peak fitness exercises, on the other hand, can actually cause your growth hormone to increase naturally, without any of the expense or side effects.
In order to better grasp the benefits of peak fitness exercises, you first need to understand that you have three different types of muscle fibers: slow, fast, and super-fast. And only ONE of these muscles will impact your production of a vital hormone called HGH, or human growth hormone, which is KEY for strength, health and longevity.
Currently, the vast majority of people, including many athletes such as marathon runners, only train using their slow muscle fibers, which has the unfortunate effect of actually causing the super fast fibers to decrease or atrophy.
In fact, neither traditionally performed aerobic cardio nor strength training will work anything but your slow muscles. These are the red muscles, which are filled with capillaries and mitochondria, and hence a lot of oxygen.
Next you have the fast type of fiber which is also red muscle, and oxygenates quickly, but is five times faster than the slow fibers. Power training, or plyometrics burst types of exercises will engage these fast muscles.
The super-fast ones are the white muscle fibers. They contain far less blood and less densely packed mitochondria. These muscle fibers are what you use when you do anaerobic short burst exercises.
High intensity burst cardio is the form of exercise that will engage these super fast fibers. They’re ten times faster than slow fibers, and this is the key to producing growth hormone!