New guidelines have been published from the new UK Chief Medical Officer on physical activity.
The new report underlines the importance of all age groups participating in a range of different activities.
Physical activity is not just a health issue. It brings people together to enjoy shared activities and contributes to building strong communities and supports the economy to grow.
Being active every day provides a foundation for a healthier and happier life.
The report acknowledges that even relatively small increases in physical activity can contribute to our improved health and quality of life. As such, although the report recommends that all individuals work towards achieving the guidelines, they are not absolute thresholds and it recognises the benefits that can be achieved at levels both above and below the thresholds.
For adults 19 to 64 - how much should you be doing?
- For good physical and mental health, adults should aim to be physically active every day. Any activity is better than none and more is even better.
- Adults should do activities to develop or maintain strength in the major muscle groups. These activities can include anything from heavy gardening, carrying heavy shopping, or resistance exercise. Muscle strengthening activities should be done on at least two days a week, but any strengthening activity is better than none.
- Each week, adults should accumulate at least 150 minutes (2.5 hours) of moderate intensity activity (such as brisk walking or cycling) or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity activity (such as running), or even shorter durations of very vigorous intensity activity (such as sprinting or stair climbing), or a combination of moderate, vigorous and very vigorous intensity activity.
- Adults should aim to minimise the amount of time spent being sedentary, and when physically possible should break up long periods of inactivity with at least light physical activity.
The report is worth a careful read and makes reference to those with disabilities, pregnancy, etc. You should always speak with your GP before starting any new fitness programme to make sure you are able.