All exercise is beneficial for the body, but not all exercise is created equal. For years, facilities across the country have offered a plethora of high-intensity interval training programs, but an exclusive option from Matrix Fitness goes beyond HIIT.

Facility operators looking for an edge — whether training elite athletes or attracting fitness beginners — will find this new program delivers results. The program is called Sprint 8, and realizing the science behind it is the key to understanding how it benefits exercisers of all ages, shapes and sizes.

The Sprint 8 Cardio Protocol can be used by anyone at any age. Just because older adults have quit using their fast-muscle fiber, those cells haven't disappeared. They are just small and wimpy because they don't get used. Sprint 8 helps recruit both slow-twitch and fast-twitch muscle fibers.

But one of the key reasons Sprint 8 is effective has to do with the effect on the body's chromosomes — specifically, the ends of your chromosomes, which are called telomeres. Telomeres deter the degradation of your genes, protecting your cells from aging too quickly. Think of them like caps on the ends of shoelaces that protect them from fraying.

Research shows telomeres appear to measure biological aging (as opposed to chronological aging). They're "cellular timekeepers," and they are a more accurate gauge than your biological age.

As telomere length becomes shorter, the structural integrity weakens, and the cells age and die more quickly. Shorter telomeres are associated with a broad range of aging-related diseases, including many forms of cancer, stroke, vascular dementia, cardiovascular disease, obesity, osteoporosis and diabetes.

The length of telomeres is an important indicator of the body's condition. Long telomeres are associated with health and longevity. The Albert Einstein College of Medicine's study of centenarians concluded telomere length is associated with exceptional longevity. Conversely, short telomeres point to premature aging. More important, we now know that telomere length is modulated by the insulin-like growth factor (IGF, or growth hormone) system, and telomere shortening and decline in IGF levels are contributors to aging.

So how do you ensure your telomeres are long? And what can you do to lengthen them?

Recent research on telomeres shows telomere length is preserved in healthy older adults who perform vigorous aerobic exercise. To be specific, telomere length is positively related to maximal aerobic exercise capacity. Researchers note that this may represent a novel molecular mechanism underlying the anti-aging effects of maintaining high aerobic fitness. So, vigorous, hard and fast cardio exercise releases growth hormone and in turn positively affects telomere length. In this way, Sprint 8 can be a valuable tool to improve health at the cellular level and a life-long weapon to fight the symptoms of aging at the cellular level.

In their book, The Immortality Edge, authors Michael Fossel (M.D., PhD), Greta Blackburn and Dave Woynaroski (M.D., CPT) conclude:

Even more impressive, from our point of view, is some recent research in Italy that found that high levels of HGH correlate with longer telomeres. Measurements for both were taken from 476 healthy people (both men and women) between the ages of 16 and 104, and after the effect of age was factored in, it was determined high HGH levels accounted for a 10 percent increase in telomere length.

As research continues, even more proof pours in about the positive impacts of the type of high-intensity exercise that Sprint 8 can facilitate. In a recent study researchers at the University of Colorado concluded:

Our results indicate telomere length is preserved in healthy older adults who perform vigorous aerobic exercise and is positively related to maximal aerobic exercise capacity. This may represent a novel molecular mechanism underlying the "anti-aging" effects of maintaining high aerobic fitness.

In a 2017 study reported by BYU News, researchers analyzed data from 5,823 adults who participated in the CDC's National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey which captured a segment on telomere length. The study shows sedentary people had the shortest telomeres. Researchers also learned there was no significant difference in telomere length between those who did moderate and low-intensity exercise and sedentary people. According to research spokesperson Dr. Larry Tucker, "If you want to see a real difference in slowing your biological aging, it appears that a little exercise won't cut it," Tucker said. "You have to work out regularly at high levels."

While the NIH didn't categorize the level of "sprint intensity," it clearly takes high-intensity exercise to impact telomere length. So while moderate-intensity exercisers are better off than those who don't exercise, they may be falling significantly below their potential in getting results for time spent. With Sprint 8, exercisers can take on short, intense workouts that will produce the growth hormone necessary to lengthen telomeres, helping people of any age look and feel younger.


This sponsored content was provided by (Matrix Fitness). What is sponsored content?


Phil Campbell M.S., M.A., C-PT, American College Of Sports Medicine and creator of the Sprint 8 training program. For more information, visit www.sprint8.com


This sponsored content originally appeared in the September 2017 issue of Athletic Business with the title "The key to longevity — lengthen your telomeres with SPRINT 8" Athletic Business is a free magazine for professionals in the athletic, fitness and recreation industry. Click here to subscribe.