The Only Type of “Multi-Tasking” that Actually Works

I’ve always been a huge critic of multitasking.

The truth it, you’re not getting more done.

You’re only ensuring multiple things get done poorly.

Which is why I was surprised to read a new study from the University of Rochester.

It showed that there’s one form of multitasking that’s actually beneficial:

Walking while problem-solving.

Thankfully, I wasn’t the only one surprised.

One of the researchers, Eleni Patelaki, said this:

“It was surprising that for some of the subjects it was easier for them to do dual-tasking – do more than one task – compared to single-tasking – doing each task separately. This was interesting and unexpected because most studies in the field show that the more tasks that we have to do concurrently the lower our performance gets.”

The study used brain imaging technology called the Mobile Brain/Body Imaging System (MoBI) to monitor the brain activity of 26 healthy participants.

The participants were shown a series of images while either sitting or walking on a treadmill.

They were asked to click a button each time the image changed.

While the results were not obvious to the human eye, MoBI revealed that walking significantly improved cognitive performance.[R]

Geniuses throughout history like Einstein, Beethoven and Darwin, are known for very different things.

But they all attribute many of their greatest ideas to a daily walking ritual.

It makes sense.

We didn’t evolve to sit around all day.

Whenever I’m faced with a difficult problem, I naturally start pacing around my office.

Sometimes, I’ll go on a 30-minute walk.

This gives my brain the breathing room to come up with the exact solution I’m looking for.

The science is in:

Take more walks.

5 1 vote
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x

Mito Male Scientific References

1. Cavallini, G., Caracciolo, S., Vitali, G., Modenini, F., & Biagiotti, G. (2004). Carnitine versus androgen administration in the treatment of sexual dysfunction, depressed mood, and fatigue associated with male aging. Urology, 63(4), 641-646. doi:10.1016/j.urology.2003.11.009

2. Malaguarnera, M., Cammalleri, L., Gargante, M. P., Vacante, M., Colonna, V., & Motta, M. (2007). L-Carnitine treatment reduces severity of physical and mental fatigue and increases cognitive functions in centenarians: A randomized and controlled clinical trial. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 86(6), 1738-1744. doi:10.1093/ajcn/86.5.1738

3. Karlic, H., & Lohninger, A. (2004). Supplementation of l-carnitine in athletes: Does it make sense? Nutrition, 20(7-8), 709-715. doi:10.1016/j.nut.2004.04.003

4. Samimi, M., Jamilian, M., Ebrahimi, F. A., Rahimi, M., Tajbakhsh, B., & Asemi, Z. (2016). Oral carnitine supplementation reduces body weight and insulin resistance in women with polycystic ovary syndrome: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Clinical Endocrinology,84(6), 851-857. doi:10.1111/cen.13003

5. Sahlin, K. (2011). Boosting fat burning with carnitine: An old friend comes out from the shadow. The Journal of Physiology, 589(7), 1509-1510. doi:10.1113/jphysiol.2011.205815

6. Soczynska, J. K., Kennedy, S. H., Chow, C. S., Woldeyohannes, H. O., Konarski, J. Z., & Mcintyre, R. S. (2008). Acetyl-L-carnitine and α-lipoic acid: Possible neurotherapeutic agents for mood disorders? Expert Opinion on Investigational Drugs, 17(6), 827-843. doi:10.1517/13543784.17.6.827

7. Miyagawa, T., Kawamura, H., Obuchi, M., Ikesaki, A., Ozaki, A., Tokunaga, K., . . . Honda, M. (2013). Effects of Oral L-Carnitine Administration in Narcolepsy Patients: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Cross-Over and Placebo-Controlled Trial. PLoS ONE,8(1). doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0053707

8. Cristofano, A., Sapere, N., Marca, G. L., Angiolillo, A., Vitale, M., Corbi, G., . . . Costanzo, A. D. (2016). Serum Levels of Acyl-Carnitines along the Continuum from Normal to Alzheimers Dementia. Plos One, 11(5). doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0155694

. Fillit, H., & Hill, J. (2004). The Economic Benefits of Acetylcholinesterase Inhibitors for Patients with Alzheimer Disease and Associated Dementias. Alzheimer Disease & Associated Disorders,18. doi:10.1097/01.wad.0000127492.65032.d3

10. Miyata, M., Yoshihisa, A., Yamauchi, H., Owada, T., Sato, T., Suzuki, S., . . . Takeishi, Y. (2014). Impact of sleep-disordered breathing on myocardial damage and metabolism in patients with chronic heart failure. Heart and Vessels, 30(3), 318-324. doi:10.1007/s00380-014-0479-6

11. Lango, R. (2001). Influence of ?-carnitine and its derivatives on myocardial metabolism and function in ischemic heart disease and during cardiopulmonary bypass. Cardiovascular Research, 51(1), 21-29. doi:10.1016/s0008-6363(01)00313-3

12. Vescovo, G., Ravara, B., Gobbo, V., Sandri, M., Angelini, A., Barbera, M. D., . . . Libera, L. D. (2002). L-Carnitine: A potential treatment for blocking apoptosis and preventing skeletal muscle myopathy in heart failure. American Journal of Physiology-Cell Physiology, 283(3). doi:10.1152/ajpcell.00046.2002

13. Shadboorestan, A., Shokrzadeh, M., Ahangar, N., Abdollahi, M., Omidi, M., & Payam, S. S. (2013). The chemoprotective effects of l-carnitine against genotoxicity induced by diazinon in rat blood lymphocyte. Toxicology and Industrial Health,31(12), 1334-1340. doi:10.1177/0748233713491811

14. Chowanadisai, W., Bauerly, K. A., Tchaparian, E., Wong, A., Cortopassi, G. A., & Rucker, R. B. (2009). Pyrroloquinoline Quinone Stimulates Mitochondrial Biogenesis through cAMP Response Element-binding Protein Phosphorylation and Increased PGC-1α Expression. Journal of Biological Chemistry,285(1), 142-152. doi:10.1074/jbc.m109.030130

15. Chowanadisai, W., Bauerly, K. A., Tchaparian, E., Wong, A., Cortopassi, G. A., & Rucker, R. B. (2009). Pyrroloquinoline Quinone Stimulates Mitochondrial Biogenesis through cAMP Response Element-binding Protein Phosphorylation and Increased PGC-1α Expression. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 285(1), 142-152. doi:10.1074/jbc.m109.030130

16. Stites TE, Mitchell AE, Rucker RB. Physiological importance of quinoenzymes and the O-quinone family of cofactors. J Nutr. 2000 Apr;130(4):719-27
17. Steinberg, F., Stites, T. E., Anderson, P., Storms, D., Chan, I., Eghbali, S., & Rucker, R. (2003). Pyrroloquinoline Quinone Improves Growth and Reproductive Performance in Mice Fed Chemically Defined Diets. Experimental Biology and Medicine, 228(2), 160-166. doi:10.1177/153537020322800205

18. Biswas, T. K., Pandit, S., Mondal, S., Biswas, S. K., Jana, U., Ghosh, T., . . . Auddy, B. (2010). Clinical evaluation of spermatogenic activity of processed Shilajit in oligospermia. Andrologia,42(1), 48-56. doi:10.1111/j.1439-0272.2009.00956.x

19. Surapaneni, D. K., Adapa, S. R., Preeti, K., Teja, G. R., Veeraragavan, M., & Krishnamurthy, S. (2012). Shilajit attenuates behavioral symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome by modulating the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis and mitochondrial bioenergetics in rats. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 143(1), 91-99. doi:10.1016/j.jep.2012.06.002

20. Chang, C. S., Choi, J. B., Kim, H. J., & Park, S. B. (2011). Correlation Between Serum Testosterone Level and Concentrations of Copper and Zinc in Hair Tissue. Biological Trace Element Research,144(1-3), 264-271. doi:10.1007/s12011-011-9085-y

21. Plasma Steroid-Binding Proteins in Tumour Diseases. (1984). Molecular Aspects of Medicine, 371-380. doi:10.1016/b978-0-08-033239-0.50032-6