25 Nov '14, 6pm

What type of exercise affects your immune system?

In this context, the conclusion is clear: a long duration of exercise (120 minutes) causes a temporary weakening of immune function, while short (30 minutes) intense exercise doesn't. How generalizable is this finding? That's very hard to say. For example, would long bike rides, which are generally less "stressful" on the body compared to long runs, produce the same effect? What role does overall fitness play – i.e. if you're used to running two hours every weekend, does it cease to be a stress? Do all aspects of immune function follow a similar pattern as this particular one measured in the study? Is 120 moderate minutes simply a harder workout than 30 intense minutes? All these are open questions, and I certainly don't think we should oversimplify the takeaway message. But it's an interesting new approach to studying exercise immunology, and it offers some food for thoug...

Full article: http://www.runnersworld.com/health/what-type-of-exercise-...

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