My parents think I've been exercising too much. I think they are being well-meaning but a little out of touch. This is also forcing me to question prevailing notions about appropriate exercise. Help me process this.
So my parents expressed shock and concern when I casually mentioned that during my exercise routine at the gym today, I pedaled the stationary bike at a heart rate of 150 bpm for 12 minutes (that's 80% my max heart rate). Their main point, as I understand it, is that I shouldn't exercise so intensely or so frequently. They made several comments. "150 bmp is double your resting heart rate, which is obviously excessive!" "Marathons are known to cause heart damage and even fatalities!*." "2x a week at the gym should be enough for you." "It is better to stick with light exercise activities, like jogging or walking." I was taken aback by these nagging, "shoulding" comments. Being 1st-generation Asian immigrants, I can see how American-style fitness norms and standards are a very alien concept.
I know that I'm not doing anything out of the ordinary compared to other young adults. But their comments got me wondering about scientific evidence for the intrinsic safety
of my favorite training activities, namely cardio, weightlifting, and high-intensity interval training. It seems entirely plausible that exercise, if done at a certain level, becomes detrimental to your long-term health. Clearly, my parents and I disagree on that threshold. What information is there that cuts to the heart of the issue?
has been writing about new research showing less or moderate levels of exercise being, counterintuitively, more beneficial than previously thought.