Andrew Harmon



Health & Fitness

Who does not like lazing on the sofa and watching TV. Or cuddling up in bed till late in the morning and refusing to let go off the sheets. It does take a mammoth effort to define a routine for physical activity, in spite of the clear understanding that a lifestyle without any physical activity, is like digging your own grave. No one wants to be called a couch potato, and worse, look like one. The question to then ask is how much physical activity is enough, to stay fit and healthy? How much should you run, how many weights should you lift or should you enroll in boot camps? And how much is it varied among different age groups.

Physical Activities for Adults
It is estimated by most experts, that about 30 minutes of physical activity every day is recommended for adults. Some experts also suggest 150 minutes of physical activity in a week is enough amount of activity to keep you fit.

Physical Activity for Children
Most experts recommend an hour or 60 minutes of physical activity for children.

What is physical activity comprised of?
A whole list of activities can be clubbed under physical activity, ranging from walking, running, jogging, stretching, push ups and so on. However, to understand better, we could give the regime of physical activity a bit more structure.

Letís categorize physical activity as the following:
1. Aerobic Activity
2. Muscle Strengthening activity
3. Bone Strengthening activity.

1. Aerobic activity refers to those exercises which involve the usage of oxygen as the primary form of metabolism or energy building mechanism. These exercises last for longer duration, but require low to medium intensity. Walking, jogging, cycling, even climbing stairs can be termed as aerobic activity. You could burn about 100-200 calories each day, by just walking for 30 minutes. However, at times, aerobic exercise alone may not suffice, especially if staying fit is more of an occupational hazard, such as, for soldiers, players and so on. In such cases, high intensity exercises should also be done, such as, jogging on a treadmill and so on.

2. Besides aerobic activity, it is also required to pay attention to muscles and bones. Strengthening of these is also imperative to stay physically fit. For muscle building, exercises, such as, push ups, leg stretches, or lifting weights are good options. Muscle strengthening activity can be done for 2-3 days in a week, along with the daily aerobic activities.

3. Bone strengthening activities are more important for children than adults. Skipping on ropes is an example of this activity. A diet with more intake of calcium also helps in building of the bones.

Physical activity cannot be temporary or ad hoc. It has to be a sustained way of life, if you want it to yield best results. Diet, correct food habits and regular exercising through boot camps, gyms, along with a structured plan for physical activities will help to make you fit and healthy.

You should always remember that you cannot suddenly push your body to perform miracles. Exercising vigorously the first day, and then ignoring it for another week, will not help. However, staying active always and at the same time maintaining a structured plan for exercising, is highly recommended.


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