If you were asked how much exercise you really need to stay fit and healthy, what would you say?
There is a good chance that you would recite the conventional wisdom that a person needs to work out for at least 30 minutes five times a week.
However, a new study shows that it might actually be acceptable for some people to do less exercise than what is typically recommended – a lot less. In fact, getting just 15 minutes of exercise every day may be enough for certain individuals.
Getting enough exercise is extremely important for your health, both physically and mentally. Working out regularly helps you age gracefully, prevents complications from living a sedentary lifestyle, reduces the risk of heart disease, and slows memory loss and brain aging. Unfortunately, getting the amount of exercise that experts recommend is not always possible for a lot of people.
A recent study conducted by French researchers indicates that just 15 minutes a day might do the trick. The study looked at 1,011 65-year-olds over the course of 12 years. The same researchers also examined a group of 122,417 people aged around 60 for about ten years.
The results were very surprising. As one might expect, the risk of death was reduced as people exercised more. However, even those with lower levels of physical activity had a 22 per cent lower risk of death compared to inactive people.
What is 15 minutes of exercise really like? For most people, this would be a brisk walk around the block a couple of times, which is actually quite reasonable.
The secret is to make sure that every one of those 15 minutes count. You do not have to push the pavement and exhaust yourself, but you do need to make sure you are getting in some pretty vigorous activity. These shorter bursts of activity are so much easier for busy people as well as older individuals who might not be able to sustain a longer period of exercise.
This study tells us that if you want to improve your health and lose weight, you really need to get moving. The assumptions of having to hit the gym every day may be wrong. Just try to fit 15 minutes of movement in every day and you will likely see improvements. Every little bit helps, and when it comes to exercise and your health, even a little bit is better than nothing.