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Monday, October 24, 2011

How Much Should You Exercise?

Are you getting enough exercise?
What are your fitness goals?  Is it to lose weight, get healthy, maintain your weight?  Whatever the goal, there are a few guidelines to help you achieve your fitness.  Of course a clean and healthy diet is a major part, but working out is the other half of the puzzle.  See if you're meeting your exercise needs.

If you want to:

Lose Weight.  Creating that caloric deficit is major work.  To lose weight, you should workout for one hour per day, at least 5 times a week.  You also need to get your heart pumping.  This means that light-intensity exercise like walking or household chores doesn't count.  Get your heart rate up with high-intensity exercise, like intervals.

Maintain Weight Loss.  Studies have shown that people who lost a significant amount of weight, were able to maintain their weight loss with a healthy lifestyle and at least one hour of exercise daily.  The FDA recommends to workout at least one hour a day and up to 90 minutes 5 times a week to maintain weight loss.  

Stay Healthy.  Regular exercise and fitness routine is a vital way to lower your risk for cancer and other diseases.  The American Cancer Society recommends you get up to 45-50 minutes of exercise 5 times per week to lower your risk for breast cancer.  Interesting!  The American College of Sports Medicine suggests that all adults under 65 exercise for 30 minutes a day, 5 times a week (at least moderate-intensity cardio) or intense cardio for 20 minutes daily, 3 times per week.  This will lower you risk for heart disease.

Working out for 300 minutes weekly takes commitment.  So don't be hard on yourself.  Take one day at a time, but do set goals for yourself! Whether it's a daily or weekly goal.  It's alright to break up the exercise if you can't get an hour in each day.  Just make sure you are doing moderate to high-intensity.  You can do it!



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