You may have heard that you need 30 minutes of physical activity every day for long term health benefits. But what is the difference between physical activity and exercise? Physical activity is the way you move your body throughout the day like walking to work, doing chores, pushing a stroller, etc. Whereas exercise is defined as activity requiring physical effort, carried out especially to sustain or improve health and fitness. Usually you exercise because you have specific goal in mind or are looking to more greatly enhance your health.
It is important to include both physical activity and exercise in your life to keep your body healthy. You will get the best benefits from exercise when it is regular and consistent. Choosemyplate.gov has a great tool to help track exercise. It is called Supertracker and you can find it by clicking here.
One type of exercise is called aerobic exercise. You might also hear it called cardio or cardiovascular exercise. Aerobics can range in intensity from low to high where your heart rate is raised and you are breathing more heavily than normal. Typically you are doing movements in a rhythmic fashion and sustaining the activity for at least 10 minutes.
The amount of exercise you need depends on your age. Adults between the ages of 18 and 64 should get at least 150 minutes each week of aerobic activity at a moderate level or 75 minutes at a vigorous level. For even more health benefits, you might consider being active 5 or more hours each week. It is a good idea to spread your aerobic activity out over 3 days during the week, doing each activity for at least 10 minutes at a time. If you are just starting out with exercise, or haven’t exercise in awhile it is important to start slowly and build yourself up.
The handout below will help you understand more about aerobic activity including the benefits and what counts as aerobic activity. Click on each page for a printable version.
Get started today. Try and aerobic activity then come on back and let me know how great you feel!
Certified Nutrition Education Assistant
Categories: Get Fit!