Are you looking for a small and easy way to improve your metabolic health without spending hours at the gym or walking for 10,000 + steps a day? Marc Hamilton, professor of Health and Human Performance at the University of Houston has one for you! He calls his groundbreaking new Xercise the “Soleus Pushup” (SPU).
Hamilton’s research has revealed that activating the soleus muscle in your calf, which is just 1% of your body weight, can have a big impact on your metabolic health. And the SPU is the key to activating this muscle effectively.
Unlike popular methods such as exercise, weight loss, and intermittent fasting, the SPU sustains an elevated oxidative metabolism for hours, even while sitting. This process improves the regulation of blood glucose more effectively than any other solution currently available, especially when compared ounce-for-ounce to other muscles; the time required vs. other exercises; and the energy expended vs. other activities.
The SPU is a specialized type of contractile activity that targets the soleus muscle, a posterior leg muscle that runs from just below the knee to the heel. Muscle biopsies have shown that the soleus has a lower-than-normal reliance on glycogen, which allows it to work for Xtended periods of time without fatiguing.
So, how do you perform the SPU? Click here to see a short video using 1 foot or two, going to a fun rhythm, but here is the word Xplanation too: When seated, with your feet flat on the floor and muscles relaxed, lift your heel while keeping the ball of your foot and toes on the floor. When your heel reaches the top of its range of motion, release your foot to come back down. Do this as long as you can, but a minimum of 3 minutes for starters, and then build up with more time and/or more sessions throughout the day.
Since the soleus is very fatigue resistant and recovers fast, the more the better! Click here to see people who do this 4+ hours every day, namely professional drummers, who sit down for their job as most of us do, but are constantly cranking on their soleus muscle with their bass drum work. Out of the 100 drummers, I counted one fat guy. The norm for our society right now is 68 fat guys for every 100. Also, have you ever noticed fidgety people who shake their knee a lot as a nervous habit? Yeah, me too, and they’re usually skinny. These are two anecdotal Xamples that mean absolutely nothing scientifically, but still one of those things that makes me go, “hmmm…” 🤔
While the SPU movement might look like walking (at least from the knee down), it is the exact opposite. When walking, the body is designed to minimize the amount of soleus energy used because the knee is mostly straight, which primarily engages the other calf muscle called the gastrocnemius. Hamilton’s method flips that upside down and makes the soleus the primary mover, and the gastrocnemius the secondary mover.
The biggest part of this discovery is that the soleus is a very unique muscle because when activated as a primary mover (instead of playing “second fiddle” as it usually does), it can easily double, even sometimes triple, the whole-body carbohydrate oxidation and even lower insulin levels (which is the primary fat-storing hormone).
The new approach of keeping the soleus muscle metabolism humming is also effective at doubling the normal rate of fat metabolism (especially in the fasting period between meals) and reducing the levels of fat in the blood (especially the VLDL triglyceride molecule that is largely responsible for arterial plaque formation).
In other words, this little muscle, when activated as the primary mover, for some reason, pulls insulin, glucose, and VLDLs from the bloodstream to use as fuel, more than any other muscle (even much larger muscles), and raises oxygen consumption significantly, which directly raises your metabolism.
Regardless of your level of physical activity, too much sitting has been shown to increase the risk of heart disease, diabetes, dementia, obesity, and more. With the average American sitting about 10 hours a day, the SPU could be the solution to a variety of health problems caused by muscle metabolism that is too low due to inactivity.
Don’t let a sedentary lifestyle harm your health any longer. Join the movement and start your journey to better health with this small initial “step” of activating your soleus muscle with the Soleus Pushup today!