Everyone’s got fitness advice for you: ‘lift it like this, cycle like that, run more on your toes…’ But with our busy lives, we sometimes have to filter out what really matters. At the end of the day, the real question is, how much exercise should we really be doing to reduce our health risks? We all want to live healthier and happier lives, so let me shine some light to the matter and share tips on how much exercise you could do to reduce health risks.
The advice that matters
If you’re aged between 18-64, the World Health Organisation has some advice for you. That’s right, the WHO. The people that ‘strive to combat diseases’. They’re not your neighbour, your mother, nor someone in the office – they’re the WHO and health is what they live for
The recommendation is that spread over ‘2 or more days a week’ you should commit to ‘at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity.’ Now, we think you’ll feel the benefits of this advice most if you translate it into a somewhat more achievable 50mins three times a week. You could go swimming one day, cycle to and from work on another day, and then finish it all off with a yoga class at the end of the week to de-stress.
Of course, if that’s all a bit gentle for you, then your second option is to up the intensity level of your exercise and embark on ‘at least 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity’ exercise. This way you only have to go to two short but incredibly hard HIIT or bootcamp classes and then collapse into bed. The choice is yours, and changing it up is a great way to stay on target too.
The exercise that matters
Exercise isn’t a one size fits all kind of game. If you’ve got a bad back, don’t go to a weights class and if you’ve got bad knees, don’t punish yourself running. Reducing your health risks can come in many forms, but injuring yourself isn’t one of them.
We believe in taking things slowly, responsibly and making sure we nurture our bodies as much as we make them sweat. This means chopping and changing the type of exercise you do. Sure, you might love your spin class, but don’t forget that a hike can be just as rewarding, and taking in some Tai Chi might turn into your new favourite hobby.
Try to seek out new forms of exercise that, over a week, give you an entire body workout. In this way there’ll be space to feel the vitality all over your body and remain enthused to stay fit. Reducing health risks requires a combination of activities that work the whole body and squeeze out the toxins caught up in the corners of our body.
The excess that matters
When seeking to shed those extra few pounds, committing to 3 days of 50 minutes of aerobic activity will certainly help shed the pounds. It’ll make you feel great too – but importantly it’ll attack the visceral fat stored deep within your body. Visceral fat isn’t the friendly fat that keeps you warm when the wind blows and makes you look sumptuous at a dinner party, it’s the kind that sits on your internal organs with no good intent.
Fat isn’t simply a random layer of stuff that has a solely aesthetic impact; it’s a complex tissue that stores hormones and can negatively impact our organs when located in close proximity to them. To banish this type of fat, engaging in the recommend duration of exercise is of the most importance.
The adventure that matters
Adventurer and writer Dan Buettner went around the globe looking for the healthiest, longest living people alive. The journey took him across every continent and into a myriad of cultures. When he published his findings, staying active was the number one noticeable trait of everyone he visited.
Not surprising, but it certainly stands testament to the importance of living a long life. The human body is designed to move, but our sedentary lifestyles have taken over to the point that’s considerably damaging to our health. So, make the effort to change your approach to exercise and build activity into our daily routine. Cycle to work instead of taking the bus, play with the kids in the expanse of a park instead of the confines of a living room, even standing at your desk instead of being seated all day.
If you’re intent on reducing health risks, then sticking to an exercise regimen that spans across your entire life is the only way to do it. Going to a single fitness class once every two weeks when you’ve got the time won’t have the impact you desire. If you’re ready to transform your life, then you’ll have to start transforming your lifestyle. Commit to 3 sessions of at least 50 minutes a week and watch as your health improves before your very eyes!