Neither has the lack of quality data regarding exactly how much extra muscle is needed to burn the 300 or so calories a 30-minute workout on the elliptical tallies.
And to make the debate even more heated, there is very little research pitting both forms of exercise against each other in an effort to see which evokes the greatest number of pounds lost. That is until now.
A research team from Duke University decided to tackle the subject head-on by collecting a large number (119) of sedentary overweight individuals and dividing them into three groups; one that sweated through roughly 45 minutes of aerobic exercise three times a week, one that performed three sets of eight weight-training exercises three times a week and one that combined both (aerobic and weight training) protocols.
Eight months later, body weight had decreased in the aerobic (1.76 kg) and the combined aerobic and weight-training group (1.63 kg) and increased in the weight-training group (0.83 kg). Body fat and waist circumference also decreased in both aerobic and combined aerobic/ weight-training groups, but was unchanged in those who lifted weights. As for muscle mass, it increased in both groups who worked out with weights, but not in those who did aerobics only.
With facial expressions of deep concentration, absorption, creativity and pleasure as they worked, the participants in a recent Crocker Art Museum art class would have made excellent models for a Norman Rockwell painting on the personal power of making art.
In his paintings and illustrations, Norman Rockwell communicated strong emotions and stories through the vivid facial expressions of his subjects. Had Rockwell seen the faces of the artists at the Crocker class, he would have been thrilled to have them as new subjects for his works.
In conjunction with the Crocker Art Museum’s current exhibition, “American Chronicles: the Art of Norman Rockwell,” the museum offered a weekend studio art class where students employed Rockwell’s art processes and techniques in creating their own works.
The course opened with students viewing selected pieces of Rockwell’s art in the exhibition gallery. Led by Docent Education Coordinator Jill Pease, the group learned that Rockwell made many preliminary versions of his works and kept modifying them until everything on the canvas contributed to the story he was telling. Rockwell made thumbnail sketches and then took photographs of live models to capture the details of the facial features he wanted before he ever started painting.
Rockwell‘s finished works portrayed the common person in “commonplaces of America.” With the artist’s recognizable and relatable images, “You don’t need an intermediary to explain what the works mean,” described Pease.
The class then moved to a museum studio for the lab portion, led by artist and community college instructor Kristine Bybee. Bybee guided the participants in making their own sketches, thumbnail drawings and paintings using Rockwell’s techniques. With pencil, charcoal and paints, the class applied their new understanding of subject, line, shapes and color to produce their pieces.
The goal is “not to imitate, but to emulate what Norman Rockwell might have done,” explained Bybee.
Participant Ann Kerr appreciated the opportunity to “look at artwork and then try to apply what I learned, such as composition and the value of simplifying.”