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Study Says If You Don’t Like Exercising, You Might Have Higher Intelligence

Study Says If You Don’t Like Exercising, You Might Have Higher Intelligence

Despite the innumerable resolutions you have made in the past, if you have been unable to create an exercise routine or stick to one, unlike your friends, no worries! – it may just mean you are more intelligent than them!

Why? Maybe It Is Because People with Higher Intelligence Don’t Get Bored Easily

New research from a US based study [1] highlights an unusual trend – the physical sacrifice behind thinking! The researchers set out to discover the link between thinking and physical activity in the everyday lives of people. To their amazement, they discovered that the cleverer you are, the less tendency for you to be active!

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This study supports the theory that people with higher intelligence don’t get bored easily and they spend more time physically lazing around while engaged in active thought. Their active counterparts, on the other hand, seem to require physical stimulation of their minds using external activities as they get bored quickly.

The Study of ‘Thinkers’ and ‘Non-thinkers’

Led by Todd McElroy from the Florida Gulf Coast University, a group of researchers conducted a test about three decades ago! A group of students were asked to fill out a ‘need for cognition’ questionnaire that required its participants to rate how strongly they agreed with the given statements such as “I really enjoy a task that involves coming up with new solutions to problems,” and “I only think as hard as I have to.”[2]

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Based on the answers, the researchers chose 30 ‘thinkers’ and 30 ‘non-thinkers’ from among the participants. The selected candidates were asked to wear a wrist device, an accelerometer, that tracked their movements and activity levels. By analyzing this constant stream of data, the researchers were able to discover that during the 5-day work week, the thinking group was far less active than the non-thinkers. But the activity levels during the weekends showed no difference between the two groups.

The researchers suggested that non-thinkers were more physically active as their minds could not keep them occupied, so they turn to physical activities to overcome boredom and fill their time.

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The Downside to Being Brainier

Mr. McElroy warned brainier people that they should watch out for the negative impact of their lazier and sedentary lifestyles. No matter how clever you are, to maintain and improve your health, you must increase your overall activity levels.

One way for people with higher intelligence to overcome their tendency towards laziness is to appeal to their own intelligence. If they are more aware of their own lack of physical activity and of the health cost associated with inactivity, then these thoughtful people are usually able to change their mindsets and choose to be more active.

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A Word of Caution

This is definitely an interesting study that could offer the thinkers some justification, but the results are best taken with a grain of salt due to the small sample of participants in the study. As it featured just 60 people, the result may be confined to a specific culture or just the student population in that culture and, as a generalisation, probably does not extend to non-students or to other cultures.

Cognition or our way of thinking can influence our physical activity levels. Irrespective of the above-mentioned study results, there is surely enough scientific evidence that points to the adverse health effects of a sedentary life.

Many people assume that a quick visit to the gym will solve these problems. But that’s not the case. Though the gym visits do help, raising your overall daily activity level is more important.[3] Maintaining an ideal balance of physical activity not just improves your physical health, it improves your mental health and ultimately your quality of life.

Reference

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Anju Mobin

Anju is a Certified Nutritionist, and a Highly Experienced Health, Fitness and Nutrition Writer.

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Last Updated on October 15, 2020

10 Lower Body Workouts Anyone Can Try at Home

10 Lower Body Workouts Anyone Can Try at Home

Are you having a hard time going to the gym for strength and conditioning? Do you want to work on your lower body strength but aren’t sure where to start? In this article, we’ll be breaking down 10 lower body workouts anyone can try at home. No gear is needed for these workouts, just some space and a bottle of water waiting nearby.

What Do Lower Body Workouts Target?

When you tackle a lower body workout, you’ll be focusing mostly on leg workouts that strengthen your thighs and calves

.

However, a lower body workout can also be great for strengthening your hips, glutes, and core, as well as stabilizing your knee and ankle joints[1].

Major muscle groups for lower body workout

    Building lower body strength is key to helping you move through your day without pain and stiffness[2]. It can also help you achieve your other workout goals.

    Do you want to train for a marathon? You’ll definitely need to build up your leg muscles. Do you want to start endurance training? It’s hard to do if your legs and glutes get tired before your heart rate goes up.

    To get started, try a lower body workout from the list below.

    10 Great Lower Body Workouts

    This will give you an overview of some workout combinations that will help you build lower body strength using your own body weight. In the next section, we’ll go deeper and give you an overview of each major exercise.

    1. The Starter Workout

    3 sets of 8-12 reps of:

    • Squat
    • Single Leg Deadlift
    • Glute Bridge

    (30 sec to 2 min rest between each set)

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    2. The 7-Minute Workout

    3 rounds of 30 seconds of each exercise:

    • Walking Lunges
    • Quarter Squat
    • Step Up
    • Single Leg Deadlift

    (1 min rest between each round)

    3. The Unilateral Workout

    4 sets of 16 reps of:

    • Reverse Lunges
    • Single Leg Deadlift
    • Skater Squat
    • Single Leg Glute Bridge

    (30 sec to 1 min rest between each set)

    4. The Endurance Workout

    2 sets of 20-50 reps of:

    • Squat
    • Walking Lunge
    • Single Leg Deadlift
    • Glute Bridge

    (1-2 min rest between each set)

    5. The Back-to-Back Lower Body Workout

    5 rounds of 10 to 20 seconds of each exercise:

    • Skater Squat
    • Step Up
    • Single Leg Deadlift
    • Single Leg Glute Bridge
    • Quarter Squat

    (30 min rest between each round)

    6. Strength Lower Body Workout

    5 to 10 sets of 4 reps of:

    • Walking Lunge
    • Single Leg Deadlift
    • Squat

    (30 sec to 2 mins of rest time between sets)

    7. Glute Burner Workout

    4 sets of 10-30 reps of:

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    • Walking Lunge
    • Single Leg Deadlift
    • Single Leg Glute Bridge
    • Quarter Squat

    (1 min of rest time between sets)

    8. The Advanced Lower Body Workout

    3 rounds of 20 seconds of:

    • Squat
    • Walking Lunge
    • Skater Squat
    • Reverse Lunge
    • Glute Bridge
    • Single Leg Deadlift

    (2 mins of rest time between sets)

    9. The Quick Lower Body Workout

    2 sets of 10 reps of:

    • Reverse Lunge
    • Step Up
    • Single Leg Deadlift

    10. The 100 Repetition Challenge

    2 sets of 50 reps on each leg of:

    • Walking Lunge
    • Single Leg Deadlift

    (4 mins of rest time between sets)

    Lower Body Workout Exercise Breakdown

    Here’s the breakdown of the lower body exercises[3] that you found in the workouts listed above.

    1. Squat

    Squat
      A squat is a compound movement which uses the major muscle groups of the lower body (quadriceps, hamstrings, gluteal muscles, spinal erectors).
      How to Do a Squat

      Place feet hip-width apart or a little wider. Your toes should be pointed slightly out, arms out in front of you. Sit into your heels until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Drive through the heels, return to the starting position, and repeat.

      2. Walking Lunges

      Walking lunge for lower body workout

        A lunge is a complex movement that focuses mostly on thigh and knee strength, but it also gets into the glutes and core.

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        The walking lunges are a harder version of a split squat, which is stationary. It then adds the component of stepping and keeping balance, which engages the gluteus medius, as well as allowing a larger range of motion.

        3. Reverse Lunge

        Reverse lunge

          A reverse lunge is very similar to the split squat, but instead, after every rep, you are returning to the starting position and stepping back.

          By reverse stepping, you are allowing for more emphasis on the hamstrings and gluteal muscles as opposed to the quadriceps muscles in a forward stepping lunge.

          4. Quarter Squat

          Quarter squat for lower body workout

            A quarter squat is the top ¼ movement of a squat. This will work mainly the gluteal muscles as it emphasizes the hip extension and not a lot of range of motion on the quadriceps.

            5. Skater Squat

            Skater squat

              A skater squat is a unilateral variation of the squat, this squat really engages the gluteus medius and hamstrings as it works unilateral stability and hip flexion, which fires up both the hamstrings and glutes.

              6. Step up

              Step up for lower body workout

                The step up is the greatest balance of getting the glutes and quadriceps muscles firing. Doing steps up during a lower body workout will not only get the glutes going, but the quadriceps as well.

                7. Glute Bridge

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                Glute bridge

                  Glute bridges are a great way to nearly isolate the glutes and build a great butt. This entire movement works through hip extension, which the main movement of the gluteal muscles.

                  8. Single Leg Glute Bridge

                  Single leg glute bridge for lower body workout

                    Single leg glute bridge ensures that we are evenly building the glutes and not relying too heavily on our dominant leg and symmetrical butt.

                    9. Single Leg Deadlift

                    Single leg deadlift

                      Single leg deadlifts engage the entire booty and hamstrings, especially the gluteus medius due to its unilateral stability property. This is a great way to spice up some routine deadlifts and engage the core while you’re at it.

                      Before and After Working Out

                      Before engaging in any physical activity, consult a doctor if you have not worked out in years. However, if you want to go at it without consulting a doctor, start slow and build your way up.

                      Even if you’re doing an at-home workout, use dynamic stretching or some light jogging[4] as a warm up before starting the lower body workouts.

                      Try these quad stretches to get started:

                      Finally, at the end of the lower body workout, use static stretching to reduce injuries and to calm down your heart rate gradually.

                      Final Thoughts

                      Completing a lower body workout can help you look and feel great, but it can also help you engage more fully with your daily activities and keep you healthier in the long run. Get started with any of the above exercises today.

                      More on Strengthening the Lower Body

                      Featured photo credit: Benjamin Klaver via unsplash.com

                      Reference

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