Yes, it is definitely January 2014. All that Christmas largesse, the year end holiday cheer, and for those close to their American cousins for their Thanksgiving, its been a trifecta of indulgence. Your toes have disappeared under the horizon, your bathroom scale has ceased flashing error messages and just lamentingly sighs in resignation. I cautioned you it was neither politically correct nor necessary to match the largest person in the room bite for bite at the Christmas party to make them feel more comfortable. I told you it was more prudent to eat before the party and not arrive hungry thereby rationalizing the need for the gluttony because someone else had paid for all this and it would be a sin to waste any of it. I know I warned you the hors d’oeuvres and umbrella cocktails were high calorie IEDs just waiting in ambush to explode on your silhouette at the most inopportune time. Well, now its time to pay and that southern Ontario winter out there makes a trek to the gym a formidable endeavour even if you had enough cash left for the ordeal. You could shovel snow and/or go for a walk. Bicycling is out of the question and its a longer gas guzzle finding a swimming pool if you are so inclined.

But there is a solution researched right here in Canada. It requires no funds but a partner is preferred. A professor of exercise science at the University of Quebec has determined that intimacy can be as beneficial in burning calories as the traditional methods including jazzercise, bicycling, tennis, badminton, swimming and even horseback riding. I ask. Where are you going to find a willing horse at this time of year in the Hamilton region? His methodology was above reproach. For his study, he recruited twenty one heterosexual couples to jog on treadmills for thirty minutes (one at a time) while researchers monitored their energy expenditure and other biometrics for what we call in science “baselines”. Our scientists then provided each couple with unobtrusive arm monitors to gauge exertion in terms of metabolic equivalents of task. The couples were instructed to engage in AT LEAST one intimate activity per week keeping a diary. The results were comparable to the 6 METs a man would burn walking briskly or playing tennis but less than the 8.5 METs burned during jogging although some of the men did exceed the jogging calorie burn for brief periods during the research. For women, the calorie burn was slightly less at 5.5 METs. No reason was given for the difference. The conclusion of this research was a data base of scientific measures proving sex is a legitimate “moderate” calorie burner. So, for all you Hamiltonians averse to the great outdoors with disdain for the group gym scene, get those snow boots off (or leave them on) and get busy. If your significant other hesitates, you might argue its all in the most noble of causes….the advancing of science

John Best has had a lengthy media management career, in television and radio and now print. As Vice President, News at CHCH in Hamilton, John oversaw a significant expansion of the news operation. He founded Independent Satellite News, Canada’s only television news service providing national content to Canadian independent TV stations. John is a frequent political commentator on radio and television, a documentary producer and author of a book and numerous articles on historical and political subjects. John is a past recipient of the New York Festival’s award for writing in the International TV category.

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