There are only THREE forms of exercise that are needed to keep human beings in near top notch condition and gain a LHL : (please consult with your physician before engaging in these exercises as we both don't want any Darwin Awards ! ) Realize that calorie restricted (CR) animals did not get any exercise, but CR and exercise is far better for a LHL. You don't have to, and should not try for super sized muscles (often damaged by high stress to be stiff and have much muscle tissue replaced by hard fibrous scaring damage ). Eating foods rich in Branched Chain Amino Acids (Leucine, Isoleucine, & Valine) will greatly help maintain your muscles and contribute to the maintenance of the muscle-brain mutual feedback loop that also keeps your brain smart. This will be covered in Diet II Section.
1. Gentle stretching and full joint rotation that ensures no part of your skeletal/muscle system or nerve control system is freezing up or losing mobility (ignoring this will leave you unable to fully use your joints ! ) If you already have problems, go slow & gentle! Always start slow and gently to avoid any tearing. (Most think that stretching exercises should be done after you have warmed up slightly).
2. A brisk 15-20 minute walk ever day - humans were built in evolution for walking, not hours of tread mill suffering. Prolonged exhaustive exercise will injure your health and tear down healthy muscles by inadvertent mini-injuries.
3. Short duration (3-4 min) of high energy output of near maximal effort - often called interval training (starting with what you can, no need to be in super shape before starting this) - it goes along incremental and soon you will notice that you are much stronger - don't overdo -slow & steady)
This can be a short running up a hill, stairs, swimming to maximum capacity, or working out on exercise machines at near top effort, or free exercise that also uses near Maximal Effort. This is only for a short time (not more than 1-3 minutes at most, but something that causes you to breath much deeper). I suggest that you start with the brisk walk and then for 1-3 minutes, you push yourself to near your maximum walk speed (or walk up hill) to expand your breathing and flood you system with health giving oxygen. Keep improving little by little and you will expand your vital lung capacity. Do not exceed you current available strength, no Darwin awards please ! This is the only form of exercise that lead to a restoration of lost lung power (vital capacity or total lung capacity). Torturing yourself for hours on treadmill machine will just tear down your health. Humans were never designed in nature to do such long term high effort. As you get stronger (starting from what you can do now and adding just a little more effort each successive day, but no more time duration. After a short term high effort, then return to a brisk or even a slow walk. Allow at least 5 x as much less strenuous recovery time as 'high effort' time. You should be able do everything in a period of about 30 minutes/day. You can emphasize different muscle systems on different days after you do the beginning brisk vs strenuous efforts for about a month. You will be greatly surprised to notice how much more energy you have and how much easier it is to fall asleep at night for a very good restful sleep. We were designed by nature to be active, but not exercise freaks. We should not just sit on our rear-ends all day long. This is the exercise component to a profoundly LHL.
Z's (Sleeping habits for a LHL)
Americans, are the world's most sleep deprived people. Part of this is our work ethic and our personal determination to fill our lives with all we can. Shorting our sleep leaves us dependent on caffeine drinks to wake up, prone to obesity (over-eating especially high calorie 'comfort foods'), prone to type-2 diabetes, at higher stress and inflammation levels, and subject to a wide variety of gradually developing diseases that shorten our life. Your own body will tell you how much sleep you need to function at high levels of efficiency and alertness. This is usually some integer multiple (3, 4 or 5 times the normal 1.5 hour sleep cycle - and easiest times to wake up).Restorative sleep has two other requirements: 1.) that you diet is good enough to prevent the sugar low problems of eating rapid delivery high carbohydrate diets, and 2.) that you are really listening to what you body is telling you rather than using sleep as an escape from daily stress. If you are under stress, you need to face and change conditions or this will shorten your life span and leave you mentally less acute while alive. Many past middle age will benefit from taking 1-5 mg of melatonin just before you turn out the lights to sleep. Melatonin is not only a normal 'dark hormone' that aids sleep, but a very potent antioxidant. You should sleep in a dark, noise quiet room.You should sleep at least 5 feet away from all electronic appliances (many still on when turned 'off', you can pull plugs, etc.) and away from the AC wires in the wall. Much more detail about protecting your sleeping environment is found in the EMF Protection.pdf for Subscribers.