Fractionalized Exercise: The Fitness Hack You Need to Know

Posted by Kyra Constam on July 6, 2017 at 11:00 AM

Whether you’re new to the fitness world, or you’ve been routinely working out for years, the term fractionalized exercise may not be familiar. However, it’s a concept of breaking up workouts that is being fervently researched and embraced by early adopters in the world of health because of its ease of use and its vast health benefits. While the American Heart Association recommends at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise for five days a week, or 25 minutes a day of vigorous aerobic activity for 3 days a week, it is not required to complete these times all at once. In fact, it may be more beneficial to break up your workouts into fractionalized exercise.

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Typically, people consider a period of exercise is as a one hour block. One hour is enough time for a warm up and a cool down, it’s the standard time of fitness classes, and it’s a solid amount of time. But, imagine your calendar with this traditional exercise time scheduled on it: there would be one period of activity once per day surrounded by 23 hours of basically inactivity, and probably lots of sitting.   

If you were to look at this same work calendar with fractionalized exercise scheduled, it would look exactly the opposite: fractionalized exercise is smaller, bite-sized chunks of activity, spaced throughout the day. So, instead of a one hour block of activity from say 7AM to 8AM followed by 23 hours of inactivity, your fractionalized exercise calendar might look like 5 to 6 small exercise breaks spaced throughout the calendar. A 10 minute exercise session from 7:30AM to 7:40AM, followed by equal breaks at 10:30AM, 1:30PM, 4:30PM and 7:30PM.  Not only are these smaller time slots more manageable–able to fit in between meetings, a lunch break, or just about anything else–they keep you moving throughout the day for continuous exercise benefits.

Similar to the relatively new idea of eating smaller meals with snacks throughout the day rather than three solid meals a day, fractionalized exercise offers a new way to take better care of your body. The reason fractionalized exercise is being researched so ardently and adopted so quickly is that small bouts of exercise spaced throughout the day does a better job than exercising once per day of regulating blood sugar and blood pressure levels, and keeping your metabolism high.

One such study touting the benefits of fractionalized exercise comes from the School of Nutrition and Health Promotion Healthy Lifestyles Research Center. This study evaluated the blood pressure differences seen between three 10-minute exercise sessions per day and one 30-minute session. The study concluded that those who engaged in fractionalized exercise experienced better 24-hour blood pressure readings and lower overall blood pressure load than their traditional exercise counterparts. Other studies show similar results for increasing insulin sensitivity, raising healthy cholesterol levels, and preventing and controlling weight gain.

How you complete fractionalized exercise is up to you: high-intensity bouts of cardio, short yoga flows, or even a mixture throughout the day are all viable options. The beauty of multiple short workouts is that each session can be personalized to your lifestyle and schedule. At Blue Goji, we offer the perfect solution to figuring out what to do during your shortened exercises: active gaming. In 2D or virtual reality (VR), our games make you exercise in moderate or high-intensity modalities. Learn more about our system and how it came together in Our Journey.

Have a question about fractionalized exercise? Leave us a comment, or tweet us! We’ll answer you as best we can or point you in the direction of an expert.

Topics: Fitness Motivation, Fractionalized Exercise, Stay in Shape, tips