Exercise can have a significant impact on the global economy according to a new study published in The Lancet medical journal. Costs of $67.5 billion a year from healthcare and productivity losses could be eliminated by an hour of exercise daily.
Inactivity is estimated to cause at least 5 million deaths each year and is linked to increased risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, and diabetes. People who sat for eight hours (or more) a day and did not exercise had the greatest risk of premature death. People who sat for eight hours a day and exercised had lower risk of premature death, even compared to people who spent fewer hours sitting but did not exercise. This shows how important exercise is for the body, regardless of how many hours you spend sitting.
The ideal amount of exercise has been debated for many years. This research study found 1 hour of moderate-intense activity for every 8 hours of sitting reduced risk.
Moderate-intense exercise is defined as 50-70% of your maximum heart rate. Some examples include brisk walking, water aerobics, biking on level ground, doubles tennis, raking leaves, hiking, dancing, and vigorous vacuuming.
Greater benefits are seen with vigorous-intense exercise defined as greater than 70% of your maximum heart rate. Some examples include running, swimming laps, biking with hills, singles tennis, basketball, soccer, jumping rope, and stair climbing.
If you are new to exercise start with a goal of 50% or your maximum heart rate [(220-your age) x .50]. Count you pulse during exercise or use a reliable heart rate monitor. Once you work up to 60 minutes of continuous exercise begin increasing your heart rate to higher zones for greater health benefits. Exercise safety is very important so speak with you physician before starting a new exercise routine...and even more importantly talk to your physician before you stop exercise too.