Research shows, a person who exercises for at least three hours a week is biologically ten years younger than someone who doesn’t exercise.
So, how much should you exercise? Little and often is the key – thirty minutes of ‘everyday exercise’ daily, according to the research. You can achieve additional health benefits by adding twenty or thirty minutes of running or equivalent activity three times a week.
Alternatively, you can combine these activities. Muscle-building physical activity is recommended at least twice a week for the majority of the body’s major muscle groups.
Children and adolescents up to age eighteen are recommended to have sixty minutes of physical activity every day.
Can you have too much exercise? The advice is not to over-exercise. Research has shown that extreme training has no additional health benefits, but instead increases the risk of injury, including stress fractures. Marathon runners can suffer heart problems in the form of irregular heart rhythm, known as atrial fibrillation, as well as wear and tear to the hips and knees. In other words, as in so many things, moderation is the key.
Use a pedometer. You may find it stimulating to use a pedometer to see weather you are reaching the target you set for yourself. Aim for 10,000 – 12,000 steps over the course of the whole day, which is equivalent to walking six to eight kilometres or four to five miles. Less than 5,000 steps is considered a ‘sedentary lifestyle’.