Are You Meeting The Guidelines?
According to new research published by the British Heart Foundation National Centre (BHFNC), nearly two thirds (62.3%) of adults do not know the physical activity guidelines.
The Chief Medical Officer has released a number of guidelines on the amount of physical activity we should be doing throughout our lifecourse.
- Early Years (Under 5's; for infants not yet walking)
- Early Years (Under 5's capable of walking)
- Children and Young People (5-18 years)
- Adults (19-64 years)
- Older Adults (65+ years)
ADULTS AGED 19-64 SHOULD AIM FOR:
- 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity a week OR 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity a week.
- Strength training that works all major muscles on two or more days a week.
- Minimise time spent sitting/sedentary.
This activity should be in bouts of 10 minutes or more. One way of achieving your 150 minutes is to do 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week.
What Counts As Moderate/Vigorous Activity?
Moderate activity raises your heart rate, makes you breathe faster and feel warmer. You will still be able to hold a conversation. Examples include: walking fast, water aerobics, pushing a lawn mower or riding a bike on level ground.
Vigorous activity will make you breathe hard and fast. You won't be able to say more than a few words without pausing for breath. Examples include: jogging or running, swimming fast, martial arts or football.
Muscle strengthening exercises include lifting weights, yoga or heavy gardening. Some activities are both an aerobic activity and a strengthening exercise e.g. running or aerobics.
Top Tips to Get Your 150 Minutes
- Start small – you don't have to do your 150 minutes in one sitting. Break it down into 10 minute sessions throughout the day.
- Be realistic – if you currently only do 10 minutes of exercise per week, start with a goal of 30 minutes, and build it up as you find it easier.
- Make exercise part of your day – walk to work instead of taking the car. Plan gym sessions for the same time each week so that they become routine but don't worry if you miss a day, just make it up the next day.
- Keep moving – everyday activities still count so take the stairs instead of the lift. Suggest a walking meeting if its less formal. All of our exercises of the week featured above can be performed at your desk.
- Don't go it alone – everyone benefits from being active so get your friends and family involved. Go to the gym with your colleagues at lunch or walk the dog with your partner after work.
- Get plenty of variety – use the LRS A-Z to pick a different activity to try each month. You'll soon find one you love.
- Set reminders – leave your trainers by the door or put post it notes on the cereal box.
- Keep an eye on your progress – use the WPC activity log to monitor how many minutes your racking up each week. The easier it gets the more points you'll achieve.
- Reward yourself – when you achieve 150 minutes, 4 weeks in a row, book yourself a massage or buy a new book. Recognise your hard work!