It’s A Man’s World
At least when it comes to exercise anyhow. According to a new study put out by the American College of Sports Medicine, men just have it easier when it comes to getting in shape.
Any woman who has gone head-to-head with a man in a diet or workout regimen knows exactly how this works. All things being held equal, the men put on muscle, get leaner & lose weight faster than the women. Evolutionarily speaking, this probably made a lot of sense but in our super-slim culture it just seems cosmically unfair.
Men have two advantages: The ACSM says that men don’t need to work out as hard or as long to get in shape and they are less likely to get injured than women. So, what can we learn from all of this? Well, men learn that they really have no excuse now for not getting rid of that beer belly.
But women, before you throw your manicured hands up in the air, there’s also a lot that we can learn from the study.
1. Biology isn’t trying to punish you for liking ice cream. Our bodies were made to store more fat then men. Yes for the birthing of the babies but also, I’m thinking, we’d last longer in a famine. Not something to put on your resume exactly but half of life is surviving. (Okay, did I just say half of life? One hundred percent of life is surviving. Otherwise you’d be dead and we’d be Waiting For Godot in the literal sense.)
2. You have to stick with exercise to see results. The ACSM says, “a woman’s body reacts to exercise like a short term starvation and metabolism slows down to preserve weight, but only for about two to three weeks.” Hear that? You have to give it at least 3 weeks. Intermittent exercise won’t give you the results you are looking for.
3. In a rehash of the slow-and-steady cardio debate, this study reports that women burn more fat than men at a slower and steady pace. Which shouldn’t be taken as license to meander leisurely around the mall. Well you can, but just don’t count it as your exercise. Unless you find supercute shoes on clearance AND you have a coupon. And then all the jumping around and screaming will totally get your heart rate up. For the rest of us, pick a level of intensity that you can sustain for 30-45 minutes. You will sweat.
4. Since we’re more injury prone, we need to be more proactive about mixing up our workouts, doing strength training and taking care of any pain right when it starts.
5. Don’t forget that biology did give us some evolutionary advantages over the men – so work the fat, er, lady lumps, that nature gave you.
There’s just something awesome about foreign commercials. Diet humor is universal. Wait, how sad is that?