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 there any benefits to exercising on an empty stomach?

Research has shown that aerobic exercise when fasting increases the use of a stored fat as an energy supply. Although these results sound promising, it is less certain that exercising on an empty stomach will help lose more weight. In fact, there are relatively few studies that have measured long-term weight loss or body fat composition. (Locked) More »

No place like home for knee replacement rehab

A home-based rehab program after a total knee replacement is equal to an initial inpatient rehab in terms of recovery speed, says a recent study. The researchers speculated that the home program helps because it encourages patients to be more active and independent from the get-go after surgery, which may help recovery in the long run. More »

Tennis, anyone?

People who play tennis a few times a week may lower their chances of dying of heart disease or a stroke compared with inactive people. Tennis provides an upper- and lower-body workout, as well as intermittent, high-intensity activity, both of which are thought to be good for the heart. Tennis playing also has been linked to other factors associated with heart health, including a lower body-fat percentage and more favorable cholesterol levels. Finally, the game encourages mindfulness and strengthens social ties, which may lower stress levels. (Locked) More »

Put some pep in your step!

Interval walking is a form of interval training, which describes any form of exercise in which a person purposely speeds up and slows down at regular intervals throughout the session. Interval walking may improve endurance, reduce blood pressure, and help with weight loss. To introduce intervals into a well-established routine, include one or two segments of fast-paced walking in a 30-minute walk. Gradually add more intervals into the routine, with an ultimate goal of walking 50% of the time at the higher intensity. There’s flexibility in how that can be done—one minute on, one minute off, or two minutes on, two minutes off. More »

Take a swing at racket sports

Racket sports like tennis, squash, badminton, racquetball, Ping-Pong, and other variations are the ideal exercise for many older men. Besides offering a good cardiovascular workout, they can help with both upper- and lower-body strength at once, can be modified to fit any age or fitness level, and do not involve a lot of equipment. (Locked) More »

What does it take to be a super-ager?

Super-agers are people in their 70s or 80s who have cognitive or physical function equal to that of people decades younger. Super-agers tend to push beyond their comfort zones to take on greater challenges compared with their average contemporaries. More »