Exercise Ask Me Archives

I’m a 48 year-old woman who has run 3 marathons. I did them all within a 10 month period. My last one was 2001 Boston Marathon with a time of 3hrs. and 50 minutes. I qualified and was psyched to do a Fall ’01 Marathon and then Boston ’02 when I became ill.
August of 2001 during a routine pelvic exam, my Ob/Gyn. found a 10cm+ tumor on my right ovary. Both the tumor and the ovary were removed and sent to various pathologists, who deemed it Borderline Ovarian Cancer. I had a complete hysterectomy w/ removal of the other ovary 6 weeks later. One week before the hysterectomy, I was having excruciating upper chest pain and fever. I was put on an antibiotic and felt well enough to have the 2nd surgery.
While recovering from that, I was experiencing a lot of abdominal problems. Ultimately it led pericarditis, and I had to have heart surgery to drain the fluid.
I’m back to running, and am working up to doing the Boston Marathon this April. I did 20 miles yesterday, and although I had to walk a bit, I was not particularly tired or sore afterwards. Of course, I don’t think I was very fast, either.
My question is this – did I cause any of my mentioned health problems by excessive exercise? Am I prone to another inflammation of my heart if I continue to train, and push myself harder? None of the doctors seemed to figure any of it out. They said it was probably a viral infection to my heart due to a compromised immune system. I’ve recently read about the lower C-Reactive protein in marathoners, and its connection to inflammation of the heart. None of my Doctors have said that that might have been what happened to me. What do you think?
(I’m at graduate school studying Exercise Science, and want to know more about this. Also, the effects of free radicals from exercise on the body. Can that cause cancer?

It is unlikely that the condition you had is due to over exercise, but there is little doubt that from an anti-aging perspective, you are over-exercising, and over-exercise can cause excessive oxidative damage which is pro-aging. While running marathons are good for the ego, it is my belief that our body is simply not built to take that kind of punishment which is indeed severe. Recall that the first person who did the marathon died at the end of the journey! For anti-aging purposes, the key to keep the body in minimal oxidative stress while providing strong cardiovascular protection and enhancing oxygenation to the body’s tissue. This translates to roughly 2000-3000 calories per week of exercise that include cardiovascular, strength, and flexibility component. Anything more and you are asking for potential trouble. There is little doubt that over-exercise and therefore over oxidation will increase the risk of cancer.
C reactive protein is a sign of inflammation. Your blood level should be under 0.8. If your CRP is high, it is indicative of inflammatory response. Because CRP is somewhat non-specific, you have to look at the rest of the body and and try to piece it all together. In addition, the traditional inflammatory diseases like athritis that increases CPT, sub-acute and chronic sub-clinical viral infection can also elevate CRP level, and one way to bring it down is to take herbs like cat’s claw and/or olive leaf, both of which have anti-viral properties.

How often do I have to exercise with jumping rope to lose some weight? Actually, I need to lose 6 kilos.

One pound is 3300 calories. Jumping rope at moderate speed for 1 hour will burn about 600 calories. 6 kilo is about 13 pounds. So you need about 13 x 5 hours = 45 hours. So spread it out over 6 months to loose. Do not lose too much too fast or you will likely to gain it back.
Follow this: Detox Diet

I am currently 44, approx 5’9 190lbs. I am in good health and am able to run 3 miles but my heart rate approaches 175 during the final two miles. I train with free weight consistently, but I run inconsistently, 1 month on 2 months off. Will consistent training in my “training zone” (130-145) lower my heart rate during excercise? How long will it take to see results if I train 3-4 times per week? Additionally, I am interested in the use of HGH. Where do I find a physician that will discuss its use with me?

Your maximum heart rate is 220- your age. Since you are 44, your max heart rate shoudld be right around 176. At your age, you should reach about 70-80 of your max. Most of the time, it’s ok to be in the max rate of 175 intermittently as you can tolerate it. This usually means a few minutes. Overstressing your heart may be good when you are young, but as you get older, overstressing can cause more harm than good. Consistent training will generally lower the resting heart rate. It should help to reduce your exercise heart rate, but it is difficult to tell the degree. It is important for you to understand that overstressing any part of the body as you age is punishing your body. Listen to your body.
I generally do not recommend HGH in injectable form for people under 60 unless there are specific reasons. I find that you can do almost the same with good exercise, nutritionals, and secretagogue while saving a lot of money and avoiding side effects.

1) What do you think about L-Glutamine and cancer, especially liver cancer? I read conflicting reports about how it helps to fight against cancer and yet could also feed the cancer.
2) How about consuming protein from poultry like fish and chicken? Does it promote cancer to growth?

Glutamine is an amino acid and it has been used in cancer therapy to a certain degree and part of an overall program. The dosage needed is quite high, somewhere around 5 grams to start. There is no magic pill, and the key is to have a blend that is personalized to your body specifically as each body react different, and there is no general rule. In the case of cancer, nutritionals are used as therapeutics, so the dosage requirements are totally different and much higher for reversal of the cancerous process.
On the matter of poultry, it is out for cancer patients because of the hormones in the commercial chickens, unless it is free range or kampong chicken, as they call it. Get your protein from plant sources (beans and legumes). Do not take too much soy or tofu due to the excessive amount of anti-nutrients.

I am working out with weights and doing cardio on a treadmill. Why do I weigh more after my treadmill workout then before? I seem to weigh less after an intense workout with weights.

Your question is very interesting. Most people weigh less after a workout unless you are taking in more water during the process. Carioworkout burns about 3-5x more calories compare to weight workout as a general rule of thumb. The numbers are purely physiological based on input vs. output.

I have a slight case of endometriosis and was wondering if it actually stops the chance for a person to have kids?

The causes of endometriosis are not yet fully known. There are quite a few theories, from genetics to toxic environment. Surgical intervention focuses on removal of endometiral tissues, while drug therapy focuses on balancing the hormonal picture with birth control pills which has a set of problems on its own. I favor the use of non toxic natural therapies to balance hormones and that usually helps with reducing the symptoms of endometriosis. In particular, you would want to immediate reduce your estrogen load as much as possible. Excessive estrogen is linked strongly to endometriosis.

The list of things you have to do is long, but I think it is worth your effort.

This protocol is to reduce the body’s estrogen loan and prevent onset of cancer. If you already have been diagnosed with cancer, more aggressive action will be needed that will include all these steps. So regardless of whether you have cancer or not, following this:

  1. Natural Progesterone
    Natural progesterone should be considered. It helps to reduce the risk of ovarian, endometrial and breast cancers, while unopposed estradiol causes that is frequently associated with firbrocystic breast disease, endometriosis, PMS, fibroids, and breast cancer. Specific dosage varies depending on the condition. For endometriois, more than the usual 20 mg a day on day 12-25 is needed. The objective is to achieve the same high level of progesterone in your body as that when you are 6 weeks pregnant. Getting a baseline salivary progesterone and estrogen level is needed, and it’s best you consult a naturally oriented physician before you get started.
  2. Dietary Adjustments
    Overeating and under-exercising are the norm in developed countries. Populations from such countries, especially in the Western hemisphere, derive a large part of their dietary calorie from fat. They also show a much higher incidence of menopausal symptoms. Studies have shown that the estrogen level fell in women who switched from a typical high-fat, refined-carbohydrate diet to a low-fat, high-fiber, plant-based diet even though they did not adjust their total calorie intake. Plants contain over 5,000 known sterols that have progestogenic effects. Cultures whose eating habits are more wholesome and who exercise more have a far lower incidence of menopausal symptoms because their pre- and postmenopausal levels of estrogen do not drop as significantly.Fortunately, scientists have identified cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, bok choy, and Brussels sprouts to contain a high level of phytoestrogen. These important vegetables work by competitively occupying the estrogen receptor sites on the cell membrane to prevent estrogen from exerting its effects on the cell. About 3-5 servings a week are needed.A plant-based unprocessed whole-food diet is recommended. At least 15 grams of fiber should be consumed a day. Avoid high-glycemic foods such as refined sugar. Avoid alcohol or drugs that can damage the liver which will lead to an increase in estrogen due to the lack of estrogen breakdown.
  3. Liquid
    Coffee and Estrogen
    Studies have shown that drinking more than two cups of coffee a day may increase estrogen levels in women. It could also lead to problems such as endometriosis and breast pain.Having high levels of estrogen for women in such cases can be detrimental as it can lead to breast cancer in women and prostate cancer in men. Those who have a family history of cancer also have a higher risk.In a clinical trial conducted, about 500 women between the ages of 36 to 45 were studied. These women were not pregnant, not breast-feeding or having hormonal treatment. They were interviewed regarding their diets, smoking habits, height and weight. Their hormone levels during the first five days of their menstrual cycle were also measured.The results showed that women who consumed more than one cup of coffee a day had significantly higher levels of estrogen during the early follicular phase of their menstrual cycle. Those who consumed at least 500 mg of caffeine daily, the equivalent of four or five cups of coffee had nearly 70% more estrogen than women who consumed less than 100 mg of caffeine daily.Caffeine intake from all sources was associated with higher estrogen levels regardless of the women’s age, body mass index (BMI), caloric intake, smoking habits, and alcohol and cholesterol intake. Coffee consumption increases estradiol levels. There are three different forms of estrogen in the body – estrone, estradiol, and estriol. Estradiol is the form that is pro-cancerous. Women should limit their intake of coffee to not more than one to two cups daily to decrease their risk of having more serious health problems.

    Chronic high caffeine intake can also lead to adrenal gland exhaustion and the reduction in production of progesterone. The proper progesterone to estrogen ratio is therefore not maintained, resulting in further estrogen dominance.

    Coffee (especially when accompanied with sugar) also creates an acidic internal environment. The body will try to neutralize the acid by withdrawing valuable minerals such as magnesium and calcium from the bone. This leads to mineral depletion if chronic and ultimately osteoporosis. In summary, coffee consumption can lead to increased estrogen, adrenal gland exhaustion, and osteoporosis.

    In addition to the above, coffee is a stimulant that leads the body to generate epinephrine as it tries to fend off insults with a flight or fight response. In response to the epinephrine, the adrenal glands (sitting on top of the kidneys) secrete cortisol, an anti-imflammatory hormone and one that is pro-aging to reduce the effects of epinephrine. Chronic excess intake of coffee can lead to adrenal exhaustion over time. The adrenal glands are also responsible for manufacturing pregnenolone, a precursor to progesterone. Deficiency in progesterone in turn upsets the intricate estrogen/progesterone balance, leading to estrogen dominance and a host of symptoms including fatique, bloating, and depression commonly associated with menopausal and pre-menstrual symptoms.

  4. Detoxification
    Estrogen is metabolized in the liver. Herbs that fortify the liver will speed up estrogen clearance from the body. Estrogen that is not metabolized by the liver will continue to circulate and exert its effect on the body.The most impressive research has been done on a special extract of milk thistle (Silybum marianum) known as silymarin, a group of flavonoids compounds. These compounds protect the liver from damage and enhance the detoxification process.Silymarin prevents damage to the liver by acting as an antioxidant. It is much more effective than vitamin E and vitamin C. Numerous research studies have demonstrated its protective effect on the liver. Extremely toxic chemicals such as carbon tetrachloride, amanita toxin, galactosamine and praseodymium nitrate produce experimental liver damage in animals. Silymarin has been shown to protect the liver against these toxins.Silymarin also works by preventing the depletion of glutathione. The higher the glutathione content, the greater the liver’s capacity to detoxify harmful chemicals. Moreover, silymarin has been shown to increase the level of glutathione by up to 35 %. In human studies, silymarin has been shown to exhibit positive effects in treating liver diseases of various kinds including cirrhosis, chronic hepatitis, fatty infiltration of the liver, and inflammation of the bile duct. The common dosage for silymarin is 70 to 200 mg one to three times a day.In addition, avoid caffeine, alcohol, and medications that interfere with the liver’s detoxification mechanism.
  5. Maintaining ideal body weight
    Half of the adults in Europe and 61 per cent of American adults are overweight. If you are overweight, lose it as fat cells increase estrogen production. Cancer is more common in overweight people. The evidence on weight is strongest for post-menopausal breast cancer and cancer of the endometrium (lining of the womb), gall bladder and kidney.Over-consumption of calories leads to increased metabolic activity in the body. This in turn leads to excessive free radical formation. Free radicals damage cells and causes genetic mutation, which ultimately can lead to cancer.Obesity is normally defined by the body mass index or BMI, which is calculated by dividing weight in kilograms by height in meters squared. An index of between 18.5 and 25 is considered healthy, while those with a score between 25 and 29 are classified as overweight and those whose BMI is higher than that are considered obese.The target weight should be 5 to 10 per cent below the ideal body weight. Your ideal body weight can be calculated easily. For women, the formula is 100 pounds plus 5 pounds for every inch above 5 feet. Therefore, for a woman standing 5 feet 6 inches tall, her ideal weight is 100 + (5 pounds/inch x 6 inches) = 130 pounds. Give or take 5 pounds for large or small frame size respectively.
  6. Exercise
    Properly performed exercises have been shown to modulate hormonal imbalance. Those who exercise regularly are also happier; less depressed, and have an optimistic outlook on life. This results in increased life expectancy. Statistically, life expectancy increases by two hours for every hour spent doing the proper exercises.Precision anti-aging exercises must incorporate flexibility, cardiovascular and strength training exercises. All it takes is 5 minutes of flexibility training every day, 20-30 minutes cardiovascular training 3 times a week, and 15-20 minutes of strength training 2 times a week. A properly structured program takes an average of 30 minutes a day, which is less than 2% of the entire day.
  7. Nutritional Supplementation
    The body of a hormonal imbalanced person needs to be fortified. Here is a summary of the daily nutritional consideration for those 45 and over:

    • Vitamin A (Antioxidant) – 15,000 IU (300% RDA) with no more than 5,000 IU in Vitamin A palmitate and the rest in natural mixed beta carotene. You will not get overdosed or feel toxic effects. More than 100 studies have shown that people with high levels of beta carotene in their diet have half the chance of developing cancer and heart attack.
    • Vitamin C (Antioxidant) – 1,000 mg (2,000% RDA) in the form of ascorbic acid (no need to spend more money on other forms unless you have a sensitive stomach or taking more than 2,000-3,000 mg per day). A study of Americans shows that intake of 300 mg of vitamin C per day adds 6 years to a man’s life and 2 years to a woman’s life. Cardiovascular disease decreased by 40%. Take this in split doses as it is excreted within a few hours. No toxicity has been reported on long-term intake of up to 20,000 mg a day. It is important to incorporate ascorbyl palmitate (the fat soluble form of vitamin C) , L-proline, and L-lysine. The three work synergistically to rebuild damaged blood vessels and prevent atherosclerosis.
    • Vitamin E (Antioxidant) – 400 IU (1,333% RDA) in the form of water dispersible d-alpha tocopherol (the natural form). This amount has been shown in repeated researches to be the optimum dose for anti-aging and cancer prevention. The risk of not taking Vitamin E is statistically equivalent to the risk of smoking. A large scale Harvard study of 87,000 nurses showed that those taking more than 250 IU a day for 2 years have 41 % lower incidence of major heart disease. To take the equivalent of 400 IU in food would require 2 quarts of corn oil or 28 cups of peanuts a day. Many in th e fore front of anti-aging research are now recommending up to 800 IU aday , especially for women in their peri- or postmenopausal period.
    • Magnesium (Antioxidant) – 500-1,000 mg (125-250 % RDA). Less than 25 % of Americans meet even the low RDA standard. A 2,000 kcal diet is needed if no supplement is taken. Critical for proper heart function, normalize arrhythmias, and helps to reduce blood pressure. Requirement is higher if you take intake of sugar and fat is high in diet. The calcium to magnesium ratio should be between 1:1 to 1:2.
    • Vitamin B9 (folic acid) – 800 mcg ( 200 % RDA) – a non-toxic nutrient that protects our chromosome from DNA damage and cancer. A Harvard study of 16,000 women and 9,500 men showed that those getting the post folic acid has the lowest incidence of getting pre-cancerous polyps in the colon. Folic Acid also helps with depression . No noticeable side effects at up to 10,000 mcg.
    • Vitamin B12 – 100 mcg- 1,000 mcg(1,666 % – 16,666 % RDA) – over 24 % of people over 60 years old and over 40 % of people over 80 years old are deficient due to decreased absorption with age. Deficiency also causes Alzheimer’s Disease like symptoms. A must take for those over 50 years old as cheap and added insurance. Non toxic at 1,000 mcg daily for many years or up to 100,000 mcg in a single dose.
    • Chromium – 200 mcg (166 % RDA) in chelated form for better absorption – Very little is contained in food and as a result , 90 % of all Americans are deficient in the RDA of this trace element which is critical to normalize blood sugar. A Israel research shows that daily intake of 200 mcg of chromium improves insulin resistance in Type II Diabetes by up to 50 % in weeks.
    • Zinc – 30 mg (200 % RDA) in chelated form for better absorption – 33 % of healthy Americans over age 50 have zinc deficiency and don’t know it. The percentage increases to 90 % for those older. You need a daily calorie intake of 2,400 kcal to get just the RDA. Zinc is critical for proper thymus gland and immune system function. Research has shown that daily intake of 30 mg of zinc reactive the immune system with dramatic improvements after 6 months in those with zinc deficiency.
    • Calcium – 500 mg (50 % RDA) in the form of calcium carbonate. In addition to keeping our bones healthy, calcium also fights cancer. Calcium carbonate contains 40 % calcium, compared to others such as calcium gluconate which contain 9 % elemental calcium. Don’t take more than 500 mg at a time for best absorption. Calcium citrate is better absorbed, but only contains 11 % calcium. Calcium should be balanced with magnesium at 1:1 or 1:2 ratio.
    • Citrus Bioflavonoids 100 mg – potent antioxidants derived from plants that have metal binding (chelating) properties. Commonly found in grape seed.
    • Omega-3 Fatty Acid – Eating 8 oz of fish a week is all you need to do. Otherwise, take 1,000 mg from fish oil to contain 360 mg EPA and 240 mg DHA. Most people taking fish oil have a tendency to develop a fishy “burp”. Over 60 research studies have shown that a variety of ailments from arthritis to heart disease can benefit from fish oil (not cod liver oil which contains a high dose of Vitamin A and D which are toxic in high doses). 400 IU of Vitamin E should be taken simultaneously to potentiate the effect of fish oil.
    • Garlic – 500 mg in concentrated form – equivalent to 1,250 mg garlic bulk or half a clove of fresh garlic. Garlic has been used by healers for over 5,000 years. Numerous studies have shown that garlic decrease triglyceride levels by decreasing fat absorption. It also supports healthy blood pressure. Two of garlic’s major compounds – allicin and ajoene – have been found to possess powerful properties that help the body boost its immune system. A natural herb that is non-toxic.
    • Evening Primrose Oil – 500 mg -1,000 mg (standardized to 9 % GLA) – an essential fatty acid. Strong anti-inflammatory properties and useful for arthritis, PMS, and skin conditions. Most researches use 3,000-6,000 mg a day. EPO is especially good to balance the hormonal system. Digestive Enzyme containing lipase, cellulase, and amylase.

    Avoid Iron unless you are anemic.

  8. Reduced Xenoestrogen (external estrogen) Load
    • Throw away all pesticides, herbicides, and fungicids
    • Throw away cosmetics that have toxic ingredients such and switch to organic and “clean” cosmetics
    • Throw away nail polish and nail polish remover
    • Use organic soap and tootpaste
    • Don’t use fabric softeners as it puts petrochemical right on your skin
    • Use only naturally based pefume. Most perfumes are petrochemially based.
    • Have a good water filter for your source of water
    • Do not use plastic goods since all plastic leach into the environment
    • Eat only organic based whole food.
    • Avoid surfactants found in many condoms and diaphragm gels.
    • New carpet can give off noxious fumes. Beware
    • Be aware of noxious gas such as that from copies and printers, carpets, fiberlboards, computer monitors that emit high level of electromagnetic force ( EMF)
    • Avoid X rays
    • Do not microwave food in plastic container, and especially avoid the use of plastic wrap to cover food for microwaving
    • Wash your food well to rid the pesticides. Bath the washed food in ozonated water for 20 minutes before cooking.

I have given you a mouthfull Katie. Plan on doing it over the next 12 months and incorporate it into your lifestyle.

Does heavy exercise (say 8 Kilometers fast walk daily) helps reducing Lp(a) ?
My Lp(a) reading is 59. My mother and father do not have this problem. How can I link it to genetics? I do not consume alcohol, tobacco, non vegetarian food, oily / fatty food, etc. Still why is my Lp(a) is high?

Lp(a) is a genetically linked risk factor that is not related to exercise in and of itself. It has nothing to do with your lifestyle. You can have perfect lifestyle and have a high Lp(a).

I’ve been weightlifting for years now and just started to really pay attention to my protein intake. My question is: How often can a person consume protein and how much at a time? I’ve heard that your body can only use 30-35 grams every 3 hours, and any more protein is just wasted. Is that true?? If not, how much and how often can I take in protein w/o over-doing it?

The amount of protein you need to be in a balance state of input and output is called nitrogen balance. This number is about about 70-100 grams a day, depending on your activity level, and that reflects a 25% protein intake in a 1500 to 2000 calorie diet. You can work backwards by understanding that 1 gram of protein yields about 4 calories, and 1 gram of fat yields about 9 calories. So if you are taking in 30% of calorie as protein in a 2000 calorie diet, you will be taking in about 600 calories or 125 grams, so to say. If you want to be in weightlifting and take it seriously, you need a lot of protein, and that is why protein powder is quite popular. That way you don’t have to eat a lot of meat, for example. Too much protein has been linked to kidney dysfunction over a long term, although most people with kidney function will not notice the problem short term. Too much protein also makes your body acidic. Nutrition from a sports and anti-aging perspective is totally different. We do not encourage too much protein, and as long as you are in nitrogen balance, that is enough. But that is hardly enough for weight lifters. You have to decide which direction you wish to pursue, as weight lifters often consume many times more protein that the body requires. The excess is not wasted but stored and goes to build muscle.

I’m O-group T.cholesterol is 190 – HDL cholesterol is 54 – LDL cholesterol is163 – Triglycerides is136. What about diet and excersice suitable for me?

As for the type of exercise that is best suited for Blood Type O is the highly intense physical exercises. Dr D’Adamo recommended the following exercises to be done at least one or combination of several of them 4 times a week for the best results:

  • aerobics 40-60 min
  • swimming 30-45 mins
  • jogging 30 min
  • weight training 30 min
  • treadmill 30 min
  • stair climbing 20-30 min
  • martial arts 60 min
  • contact sports 60 min
  • calisthenics 30-45 mins
  • cycling 30 min
  • brisk walking 30-40 min
  • dancing 40-60 min
  • in-line or roller skating 30 min

Please bear in mind that the above is general recommendation only. If your body does not seem to fit into the picture, please do not hesitate to change.

How many calories do jumping rope burn compared to running? Is it an effective way of burning fat and losing weight?

Running @ 7mph burns 11.2 -21.4 calories per minute depending on your weight. Jumping rope @ 120 turns/min burns 10.2-19.4 calories per minute depending on your weight.
The heavier you are the more calories you will be burning.
Any exercises that help you to get your heart beat up to 65-70% your maximum rate (220-your age x 65%) for exercise will help you to lose fat.

Your website goes a long way to help those you are keen to take insurance against the effects of aging, though it doesn’t address what requirements a young person who is very physically active.
I am 25 years old and am training for a marathon. I go to the gym 3-4 times a week and also do running of about 40 miles a week.
Should I simply take the SONA with my increased dietary needs, or should I take different levels of vitamins, minerals and nutrients?

The focus on the website is for those over age 25 and not for the athletic minded person. You are totally right in that perspective as competitive and peak performance parameters are totally different from anti-aging parameters in end point, laboratory values, bodily requirement, and approach. If you are age 25 and doing a marathon, your oxidative stresses are much higher, and you need more anti-oxidant protection. Our body is simply not designed to run 26 miles at a time. Imaging the pounding your knees, cartilage go through at 150 x a minute x 2-3 hours for good runners. Doing a marathon is more for your ego than for your body. Mind you I am a runner myself but at my age, I run only 10k or 20k max. Do a marathon if you wish, but you are smart to start protecting your body as well.
For someone on marathon training, the basic vitamin C should be increased to 500 -1000 a day, for example, compare to 100-200 mg for a regular individual of same age. This is just one example. If you are training for peak performance, other anti-oxidants need to be titrated upwards also.

What is the recommended time for riding a stationary exercise bike? My 82 year old mother-in-law rides one for 2 to 3 hours at a time, almost every day. She has it set for very little, in any, tension. She does have some problems with her hip, knees, and feet and walks with a cane. I think she is overdoing it with that much time on the bike. I have tried to get her to limit it to 30 minutes maximum. What would you recommend?

Technically, it has been shown that exercising up to 3000 calories a week is best for the heart. For an 82 year old, I would be very careful. Exercising 2-3 hours a day is OK, as long as the body is not over stressed The key is to keep the heart rate up at ( 220-her age ) x 70% which is equivalent to around 100 as a way to keep fit. Always consult a physician in that age and get regular check up. Studies have now shown that you can break up the exercise time into blocks of 10 minutes each, so that it is not critical that the aerobics be continuous.