MODERATE EXERCISE WILL DO YOU A LOT OF GOOD
THE OLD EXPRESSIONS AREN'T TRUE
No pain, no gain, No way. Exercise doesn't have to hurt to be beneficial. On the contrary, exercising to the point of pain can do more harm than good. We've come a long way in our thinking and knowledge of exercise. Today we know that there are many health benefits to be gained from moderate exercise, benefits that include reducing your risk for osteoporosis, diabetes, coronary heart disease and cancer. So forget the no-pain-no-gain adage. Instead keep in mind that exercise does not have to be uncomfortable to be beneficial.
Something is better than all or nothing.
Some people used to swear that exercise had to be intense for there to be any benefit. That's not true when it comes to maintaining a state of health and well being. Actually, one of the reasons so many individuals quit exercising is because they can't stick with an intense program. They - and you - don't have to. In order to maintain a program of regular physical activity, you have to acknowledge how much is enough, especially in terms of your own personal goals and objectives.
YOU DON'T HAVE TO PUT OUT A LOT TO GAIN A LOT
This perceived exertion scale shows you how little you have to exert yourself in order to benefit from regular physical activity. This scale is used by exercisers to rate their exertion during any type of fitness program use this scale.
Exercise rated in the 11 to 15 range is enough to improve cardiovascular condition. But even less than that - exertion rated in the 8 to 12 range, which is very light to moderate activity - can bring many healthy benefits.
RESEARCH SUPPORTS MODERATE EXERCISE
A study of more than 13,000 men and women, followed over eight years, brought to light a starling piece of information: The individuals with fitness levels rated up to "average and slightly above average" had a lower death rate from cancer and heart disease. People who exercised more or harder, who were in the "excellent" fitness category, did not show any additional health benefits.
This study clearly showed that the fitness level associated with the lowest mortality rate could easily be achieved by most people with brisk walking for 30 or more minutes daily, several days week. Another way to achieve the same fitness level is breaking up an exercise session into three 10-minute segments over the course of a day.
Support for moderate physical activity has come from a variety of research, including a study of Harvard alumni which followed Harvard grads over a 30- year period. The study found that the alumni who were moderately active- who participated in sports, climbed stairs or gardened - were at a substantially decreased death rate from not only coronary heart disease, but from all cause of death.
IT'S EASY TO ENJOY MODERATE ACTIVITY
Now that you know how good moderate physical activity is for you, you probably want to get going. Good! You're probably doing some things already, and others are easy to include in your daily life. Here are a few ideas:
While some of the old sayings aren't true any more, there is still one that applies: Increasing your level of daily physical activity can add life to your years and years to your life.
Fit Facts From the American Council on Exercise ACE-- acefitness.org
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