Exercise & Fitness

Exercising regularly, every day if possible, is the single most important thing you can do for your health. In the short term, exercise helps to control appetite, boost mood, and improve sleep. In the long term, it reduces the risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, dementia, depression, and many cancers. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend the following:

For adults of all ages

  • At least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise like brisk walking or 75 minutes of rigorous exercise like running (or an equivalent mix of both) every week.  It’s fine to break up exercise into smaller sessions as long as each one lasts at least 10 minutes.
  • Strength-training that works all major muscle groups—legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders, and arms—at least two days a week.  Strength training may involve lifting weights, using resistance bands, or exercises like push-ups and sit-ups, in which your body weight furnishes the resistance.

For pregnant women

The guidelines for aerobic exercise are considered safe for most pregnant women. The CDC makes no recommendation for strength training. It’s a good idea to review your exercise plan with your doctor.

For children

At least 60 minutes of physical activity a day, most of which should be devoted to aerobic exercise. Children should do vigorous exercise and strength training, such as push-ups or gymnastics, on at least three days every week.

Exercise & Fitness Articles

Are you functionally fit?

Exercise is important to maintain “functional” fitness, which is the ability of a person to perform regular daily activities, whether that means carrying laundry or playing with grandkids. A program to maintain functional fitness includes exercises that mimic daily activities, with motions that help the body get better at pushing, pulling, climbing, bending, lifting, reaching, turning, squatting, and rotating the trunk or shoulders. The exercises also train the muscles to work together. (Locked) More »

Feel the beat of heart rate training

Guidelines recommend at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week. A good way to maintain moderate intensity is with heart rate training, in which a person exercises at 60% to 75% of maximum heart rate. By wearing a heart rate monitor while exercising, a person can have a constant reminder of exercise intensity, so he or she can stay in the moderate-intensity zone as much as possible. (Locked) More »

Roll away muscle pain

Muscle soreness can become a regular part of daily life as a person ages. If aches and tightness interfere with daily living, adopting a foam rolling routine can help. Foam rollers can address common problem area like calves, hamstrings, lower back, and IT (iliotibial) bands. The roller glides over muscles much like a rolling pin to knead out knots, and it’s firm enough to apply sufficient pressure to address deep spots. (Locked) More »

A day at the 5K races

Older men needing fitness motivation or looking for a new challenge should consider a local five-kilometer (5K) run. The events are ideal for beginners or more advanced runners and even walkers. Training for one can help men gauge current fitness, identify areas for improvement, and reduce the risk of knee pain and osteoarthritis. (Locked) More »

Don’t just sit there, move more!

Sitting for long, uninterrupted periods of time has harmful effects on heart health, even in people who exercise for an hour each day. The damaging effects include increases in belly fat, triglyceride levels, and insulin resistance, as well as a greater likelihood of developing heart disease or dying from any cause. Standing up or doing light exercise (such as walking) every hour or so may help lower these risks. Suggestions for adding more movement throughout the day include using a standing desk for computer work and sitting on an exercise ball or using a portable pedaling machine while watching television. (Locked) More »

Free services to help your health

There are many free services that can help improve health. Grocery store workers can point shoppers toward fruits and vegetables that are in season and the freshest cuts of meat. Pharmacists may be able to dispense free prescription medications or free advice about how to use medications, and even take a person’s blood pressure at no charge. Some universities offer free online academic classes. Some nonprofit organizations provide free food to people who are too sick to shop or cook for themselves. And many organizations offer free exercise classes for older adults. (Locked) More »

Yoga can help with low back pain relief

A 12-week yoga program that focused on strengthening the core and improving mobility helped reduce pain and improve quality of life among people who suffered from chronic low back pain. More »

Have the secrets to exercise success in the palm of your hand!

You can access Starting To Exercise on your smart phone, tablet, or desktop computer. With easy log-in and simple-to-navigate screens, this online course is designed for adults of all ages. In a NEW online course, STARTING TO EXERCISE, today's leading fitness instructors show you workouts that work...the exercises that will help you enjoy a healthier, more vigorous, and longer life! It's a fact: regular, vigorous exercise can add more than three years to your life! Exercise lessens your risk of heart disease and stroke. It lowers blood pressure, reduces risk of certain cancers, strengthens bones, protects joints, and keeps your mind sharp. More »

10 tips to get you exercising regularly

The challenges of balancing the demands of family, work, and other responsibilities can make it difficult can make exercise a low priority, but it's important to stay as healthy as possible to enable you to meet all those challenges. It's possible to find time for your fitness goals by changing your thinking and behavior. (Locked) More »