How Much Should You Be Exercising?
I always thought I was getting enough exercise until I came across the book, “How Not to Die,” by Michael Greger. I can safely say I used to workout 3-4 times a week for approximately 55-65 minutes a day. But after reading this book, I have to say I was shocked that I wasn’t getting enough exercise that I needed to stay healthy and ward off disease.
Dr. Gregar writes, “Compared to eating habits in the 1970’s, every day, children are consuming the caloric equivalent of an extra can of soda and small fries, and adults are eating an extra Big Max’s worth of calories. Just to make up for the extra calories Americans are taking in compared to a few decades ago, as a nation, we’d need to walk an extra two hours a day, every day of the week.”
This statistics opened my eyes and made me evaluate my workout habits and the length of time I spend working out every day. I am sure I’m not different than the average American adult and consuming more calories than I should be, so I needed to make up for it in my activity levels.
How much should I be working out?
Moderate-Intensity Activities – 90 minutes per day.
There are many kinds of exercise that are considered moderate intensity. The following are some common ones.
- Brisk Walking
- Easy Jogging
- Elliptical Trainer
- Bicycling (Under ten miler per hour.)
- Swimming Leisurely
- Water Aerobics
- Dancing (Examples, ballroom, and line)
- Doubles Tennis
- Softball and Baseball
Vigorous Activities – 40 minutes per day.
Common types of vigorous activities include the following.
- Race walking, jogging, or running
- Swimming laps
- Singles Tennis
- Aerobic dancing
- Bicycling 10 miles per hour or faster
- Jumping rope
- Heavy gardening (continuous digging or hoeing)
- Hiking uphill or with a heavy backpack
Since reading this, I am now doing 40 minutes a day of vigorous activities. I have to admit, I feel better since switching up my workout routine. I’ve shortened the time of my workouts, but I am committed to working out at least six days a week. One of my daily workouts includes jumping rope, it is easy, inexpensive and you can do it anywhere. This is the jump rope I use at home when working out. I also like to incorporate a medicine ball and bands for resistance training into my home exercises.
My goal is to stay as healthy and fit as I can. By switching up my workout routine, I can honestly say I’ve already noticed a difference. My muscles aren’t as fatigued because I’m working out for a shorter period, which allows me to work out more times a week.