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Finally doing 7-minute workout in 8 minutes

 •  • by Paul Ingraham
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Weekly nuggets of pain science news and insight, usually 100-300 words, with the occasional longer post. The blog is the “director’s commentary” on the core content of a library of major articles and books about common painful problems and popular treatments. See the blog archives or updates for the whole site.

I’ve been doing the “scientific 7-minute workout” regularly for about two years now … and I finally have it down to 8 mins.

That number has slowly come down from 10-12 minutes, which is what it takes with less efficient and lazier transitions between exercise. But now that I’ve got the sequence perfectly memorized, and all my manipulation of timers and props is automatic, I’ve slowly whittled that “7-minute” workout down to just 8 minutes. Which is as quick as it’s going to get. (And on many days it’s still 9-10 minutes, for no obvious reason!)

Thanks to gadgets (smart watches), I now know that the S7M workout, done right (intensely), burns about 5 calories per minute, which is somewhat more than a brisk walk, and much less than a run, for about 40-45 calories total. In other words, you could fuel this workout with a small glass of 1% milk. Sounds lame when I put it that way! And yet I still find it packs a punch much bigger than those humble stats would suggest. After a couple years of doing it regularly, it still feels like it really takes some oomph, something I have to push myself to do.

But also still completely worthwhile. By far the strongest trend in pain science in the last few years, and gathering steam all the time, is that exercise is just crazy valuable (and surprisingly efficient to boot).

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