BENEFITS OF PHYSICAL ACTIVITY
physical health benefits
- Regular, moderate intensity exercise has been shown to decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease as well as reduce the risk of myocardial infarction (heart attack).
- Physical activity lowers the risk factors associated with developing type 2 diabetes as well as a reduction in diabetes related complications and diabetes related death for those who have already been diagnosed.
- Regular physical activity can reduce the health related risks associated with being overweight even if there is not a significant loss of body weight as a result of the activity.
- Running has shown a reduction in cholesterol and percentage of body fat as well as a reduction in heart rate and the maximum amount of oxygen required to participate in physical activity.
mental health benefits
- Regular physical activity may play a role in alleviating symptoms of anxiety and depression.
- Both aerobic (endurance) training as well as strength and flexibility training are effective for treating symptoms of depression and anxiety.
- For individuals with limb loss, physical activity has been shown to improve personal relationships as well as acceptance of their disability.
- Runners often experience an increased positive mood immediately after a run.
recommended amount of physical activity
The American College of Sports Medicine and the american heart association recommend:
- All healthy adults aged 18 to 65 should participate in moderate intensity physical activity for a minimum of 30 minutes, 5 days a week. An alternative is vigorous intensity physical activity for a minimum of 20 minutes, 3 days a week.
- Moderate intensity activity is generally equivalent to a brisk walk
- Vigorous intensity activity is equivalent to jogging or any activities that cause rapid breathing and a substantial increase in heart rate.
- Additionally, every adult should perform activities that increase muscular strength and endurance at least 2 days a week.