Exercise – some of us love it, others take a bit of motivation to get up and get moving, which is okay! We are all on a different journey with our physical activity, but there are some general recommendations for how much activity you should be aiming for each week.
The Department of Health recommends that adults accumulate 2 ½ to 5 hours of moderate intensity or 1 ¼ to 2 ½ hours of vigorous physical activity each week, or a combination of both. Moderate intensity is classified as an activity that gets you puffing and your heart rate increases but you can still talk throughout it – think a brisk walk, dancing or working in the garden. During vigorous activity it would be difficult to hold a conversation and really gets you huffing and puffing- think going for a run or playing competitive sports.
In saying this, doing even a little bit of physical activity each day is better than none at all. ‘Incidental exercise’ involves little changes in our day to day life that boosts our activity such as taking the stairs instead of the lift and parking the car further away in the carpark.
There are many benefits to keeping regularly active:
- Reduce risk of developing conditions such as heart disease, cancer and type 2 diabetes
- Improve muscle and bone strength, balance and general fitness
- Boost mood and reduce anxiety and depression
- Improve cognitive ability
- Improve sleep
Aiming to reach the recommended time of activity may feel overwhelming, especially for those of us who find they don’t have a lot of spare time during the week. However, doing even a little bit each day and adding in some incidental activity is a great place to start. If you are keen to build a regular exercise program into your week whether it be a home program, joining one of our group exercise classes or a 1:1 session in the gym, or just not sure how to incorporate more activity into your week, our exercise loving physios at PhysioWest are here to help!