While it’s great to be super-duper fit, it’s okay to be happy with your figure and want to just stay healthy. But what is enough exercise to stay healthy? That’s a good question. Here we look at what kind of exercise you can do and how much you should be doing of it to keep you healthy!
What counts as exercise?
Exercise doesn’t have to be complicated. Technically, walking to the fridge counts as exercise. Anything that uses your limbs, raises your heartbeat and could make you break a sweat counts. But exercise to stay healthy? Walking to the fridge can be included in this, as long as it’s brisk and for enough time… basically anything which leaves you feeling refreshed, your muscles feel like they’ve worked and you’re a little bit out of breath will be exercise to stay healthy.
What are the benefits of exercise?
Exercise has so many benefits for your body. It gives you energy, gets those endorphins pumping, speeds up your metabolism, strengthens your immune system and so much more! In general, it gives you a better quality of life. Most importantly, though, it keeps you healthy – and by this we mean it actually increases your life span… it’s been proven! This is because it decreases the risk of diseases like cardiovascular disease and cancer.
How little exercise can you do to stay healthy?
A study by the Journal of the American Medical Association looks into the death certificates of 4 different groups of people. (1)
- Those who are inactive
- Those who are insufficiently active (less than 150 minutes of moderate activity 1-2 times per week)
- Those who are moderately active (at least 150 minutes of moderate activity 1-2 times per week)
- Those who are regularly active (at least 150 minutes of moderate activity 3-4 times per week)
The results shows that by doing at least 2 workouts a week, we are 37% less likely to die of cardiovascular disease, and 14% less likely to die of cancer than those who are inactive. This means that to just stay healthy, if being fit isn’t the aim, you can workout twice a week. This includes 300 minutes of exercise per week, which could be walking as well (not necessarily sweating gym time).