Harvard review of new guidelines links an article to where your lifestyle stands and how we can further improve.
“What changed in the new exercise guidelines?
- Overall, move more, sit less. Work toward reducing the amount of time you spend sitting every day. If you have a desk job, get up to walk around regularly, or try chair yoga or a few desk exercises.
- All activity counts toward the recommended goals — not just 10-minute bouts of activity, as past guidelines recommended.
- Younger people and older people may benefit in different ways from exercise. It facilitates normal growth and development for preschoolers through teens, strengthening bones and muscles and improving cardiovascular health. Older adults who participate in regular exercise have better balance, and lower risks of falling and injury, thus improving their ability to remain independent.
The new guidelines base your dose of physical activity on relative intensity: how much effort a given exercise takes compared with your capacity for exercise. A brisk walk counts as moderate physical activity (think: fast enough so that you can speak comfortably, but not sing). The speed of this walk will be much faster for someone who is in shape than for someone who is just starting to exercise or getting back to activity after a break. But no matter where the starting line is, most people can safely improve their fitness and health. Begin with lower amounts of exercise and slowly increase duration, intensity, and frequency.”