Monday, June 23, 2008

Overloading--the sure way to improve

One of my favorite things to talk about is exercise-wait, don't stop reading this, its not just about exercise. The most basic principle in exercise is called The Overload Principle which says that in order to improve a particular body system (cardiovasuclar or musculoskeletal) you have to place a greater load on that system than its used to. The system will eventually adapt to the load placed on it. There are 4 factors in overloading--commonly known as the FITT factors.
  • Frequency--how often
  • Intensity--60-80% of your max heart rate
  • Time--how long
  • Type--mode of exercise (jogging, biking, swimming, dancing etc.)

You actually overload by increasing at least one of the FITT factors. The great thing about this prinicple is that it applies to nearly every aspect of life. In order to improve on anything, an overload must be instituted. So you could easily apply this Overload Principle to your Spiritual welfare through scripture study. Its easy to increase frequency, intensity (actually studying instead of perusing) time (say 30 minutes) and type could be studying by topic or reading book by book. You could also apply the FITT factors to prayer, saving money, speaking kindly, listening, sewing, cleaning, cooking, eating healthy and communicating with your spouse. Anything you want to improve on could be done using this overload priciple. My favorite of the 4 factors in overloading is INTENSITY. Notice that its not recommended to increase your intensity to 100% of your maximum ability. If you were running and worked at 100% of your maximum heart rate you'd be able to go for a short period of time and most likely faint. This may keep you from exercising again. Slow and steady is the key here. We all know what its like to have worked on something so intensely that we are completely worn out and unable to attend to daily needs of our families and ourselves, taking sometimes days or weeks to fully recover. Of course, you can't always plan ahead enough to keep yourself from these moments but with things you can control the idea is to put in place a load heavier than you are used to but not so heavy that it takes everything you have to lift it. Add consistency and time to that load and there you go--you've improved.

9 comments:

Jessica said...

I love this principle! You're the best blogger I know. :)

Casey said...

I couldn't have heard a truer nugget of truth today than that. I typically fail due to the intensity aspect which I tend to do at 110% and then take weeks to years to overcome.

Nanci said...

Jamie - thanks for the great thoughts and instruction. I feel so motivated!

Jan said...

That's very cool, Jamie! It's like the really good part of a fireside, lol. I have another cool formula for you: power=energy exerted (effort)/time spent. I think that is applicable to lots of stuff, too.

Thanks, Jamie!

Trueman twins said...

Great post! Either before or after the gym I take the time to read my scriptures. It makes such a difference in my day. I feel that if I can take the time to work on what is on the outside I should definitely work on the spiritual side too!

katie said...

That's interesting because I've been noticing lately that I will do really good at putting forth energy to accomplish something great, but then I'm content with staying there for quite a while. I don't keep pushing forward, usually because I think it will be too hard. But when I make little efforts more consistently I know my life would be much more fulfilling. Funny that we've been thinking the same thing in different words

leigh said...

jamie - i think you need to write your own self-improvement book. you can start with all the entries on this blog!

Jessica said...

I second that!

Tami said...

Great application Jamie! I love reading your blog. It was great to see you and your cute kids!