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

Hearts and heat: Take common-sense steps to stay safe this summer

To stay safe in extreme heat, otherwise fit, active men should know and stay within their limits. Avoiding work and exercise during the hottest times of the day and drinking adequate fluids help prevent problems. Heat exhaustion, heat stroke, and muscle cramps are signs that the body is unable to regulate its temperature in extreme heat. Men with cardiac conditions are at increased risk for developing heat-related problems. They should also understand how medications could alter their response to extreme heat. Flushed, clammy skin; heavy sweating; weakness, lethargy, loss of concentration, headache, and nausea are signs of heat exhaustion. This can progress to heat stroke, which is a medical emergency and can be fatal. Men who feel these symptoms should get to a cool place and drink fluids. More »

How to know if a digital fitness monitor is worth the money

Digital fitness monitors (DFMs) are great tools to track exercise and diet progress. They come in wearable styles such as wristbands, watches, and pendants, as well as hand-held pieces that can be clipped on a sleeve or slip into a pocket. DFM features may be simple—tracking the amount of steps taken or calories burned—or they more sophisticated, with sensors that capture heart rate, perspiration, skin temperature, and sleep patterns. DFM prices increase with the amount of bells and whistles available. The majority are in the $50–$200 range. More »

Simple exercises to prevent falls

Changes to the brain and nervous system, vision, muscles, and other systems that control balance can lead to an increased risk for falls. Strength training, balance exercises, stretches, and other forms of exercise can help prevent falls. (Locked) More »

4 Fast mood boosters

Many activities can help chase away the blues. Examples include exercising, meditating, spending time with others, taking up a hobby, and volunteering. (Locked) More »

Easy exercises for healthy knees

Even a small amount of exercise throughout the day will make a difference in knee health. Just a few repetitions here and there will give the knee joint more stability, which decreases stress at the joint from any weight-bearing activities. That can also help lessen the progression of arthritis in the joint. It’s helpful to fit in a few repetitions while watching TV or talking on the phone. Exercises that can help improve knee health include heel raises, standing side leg lifts, standing knee lifts, seated hamstring curls, and seated knee extensions.   (Locked) More »

Boost your thinking skills with exercise

Exercise boosts memory and thinking skills. It does this by reducing insulin resistance, reducing inflammation, and stimulating the production of growth factors, which are chemicals in the brain that affect the health of brain cells, the growth of new blood vessels in the brain, and even the abundance and survival of new brain cells. Exercise may also help increase the parts of the brain that control thinking and memory. Exercise can also improve memory and thinking indirectly by improving mood, reducing stress and anxiety, and improving sleep. Problems in each of these areas frequently cause or contribute to cognitive impairment. More »

Fast way to improve heart and muscle fitness

Stair climbing is an exercise that can be done at home, at a gym, or in public. It has many physiological benefits. It burns twice as many calories as walking, and it engages muscles in the legs, arms, buttocks, and shoulders. It’s also an effective aerobic exercise, which is good for heart and lung health. Stair climbing is not appropriate for people with balance problems or pain and weakness in the shoulders, hips, knees, ankles, or feet. It may not be right for people with heart and lung disease. (Locked) More »

Relief dos and dont's for that nagging neck pain

Most neck pain comes from preventable causes such as poor posture, stress and anxiety, and sitting in prolonged positions with the neck bent for too long. As a result, many people tend to have imbalances in their neck muscles, and that causes the deeper muscles that attach one vertebrae to another to become weak and overstretched. To combat neck pain, people are advised to maintain good posture, keep a computer at eye level, and keep from holding the neck in a bent position for more than 10 minutes at a time. (Locked) More »