Everyday: Make Exercise a Top Priority

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Is exercise on the top of your daily to-do list? It should be! Adults need 150 minutes of moderate exercise a week or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise, or a combination of both. Although that may seem like a lot of time you don’t have, yes you can! It breaks down into just 30 minutes a day, five days a week. Fitting in fitness will help you get active and heart-healthy!

Benefits of daily exercise

It boosts your mood.
Exercise is a free pick-me-up without the calories of a fancy coffee drink. Improve your day with fun and quick exercises that will help your heart and leave you in a happy state of mind.

Maintain a healthy weight.
When you’re burning calories, you’re one step closer to losing extra weight if you are also reducing your calories. And regular physical activity helps you tone your muscles and increase flexibility. See how many calories you’re burning by doing your favorite exercises (see below).

Reduce your risk.
Take charge of your health and reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke, hypertension, diabetes and obesity with daily exercise.

Reach optimal health.
Optimal health
 is the ultimate goal for your overall well-being. For each hour of moderately vigorous physical activity some adults may gain about two hours of additional life expectancy. Maintain healthy habits now so you can enjoy the future.

Make a plan
You’ve got a calendar for work, soccer practice and family functions, but do you have one for exercise? Make a daily plan — and stick with it! Reward yourself with new workout gear when you complete a week, then a month, then a year! Think about your workouts as important meetings that you shouldn’t miss, but if something comes up, reschedule right away.

Be active
There are many ways to get physically active, but the most important thing is that you do it! Just about any activity you do counts toward better health — mowing the lawn, cleaning the house and playing with kids. You can start with walking, which is a great low-impact exercise.

Physical activity and calories
The chart below shows the approximate calories spent per hour by a 100-, 150- and 200- pound person doing a particular activity.

Activity 100 lb 150 lb 200 lb
Bicycling, 6 mph 160 240 312
Bicycling, 12 mph 270 410 534
Jogging, 7 mph 610 920 1,230
Jumping rope 500 750 1,000
Running 5.5 mph 440 660 962
Running, 10 mph 850 1,280 1,664
Swimming, 25 yds/min 185 275 358
Swimming, 50 yds/min 325 500 650
Tennis, singles 265 400 535
Walking, 2 mph 160 240 312
Walking, 3 mph 210 320 416
Walking, 4.5 mph 295 440 572

For more resources and exercise information, visit heart.org.

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