By JOHN BOBALIK
John Bobalik, MS, HFS, SSFI, is coordinator of Purdue Calumet’s campus-based Fitness Center, a comprehensive exercise and workout facility for students, faculty, staff and community residents. He also is an exercise physiologist, Health and Fitness Specialist, and SilverSneakers Fitness Instructor/Healthways.
Q. Are there guidelines regarding the amount of physical activity required to accrue health benefits?
A. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in 2008 published a document entitled, “Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans,” suggesting substantial health benefits can be gained by following its recommendations for exercise.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services:
- Adults (aged 18-64) should engage in 2 hours and 30 minutes or 150 total minutes a week of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity. Moderate-intensity exercise is physical activity performed at 50 to 70 percent of one’s maximum heart rate. During such a level of intensity, the exercise is carried on at a comfortable pace, such that an exerciser can carry on a conversation.
- An option for adults (aged 18-64) is to engage in 1 hour and 15 minutes or 75 total minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity. Vigorous-intensity exercise is physical activity performed at 75 to 90 percent of one’s maximum heart rate. When exercising at this level of intensity, a person would be unable to carry on a conversation.
- Adults (18-64) also can engage in an equivalent combination of moderate and vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity.
- Additional health benefits are provided by increasing to 5 hours or 300 total minutes a week of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity, or 2 hours and 30 minutes or 150 minutes a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity or an equivalent combination of both.
- Additionally, adults (18-64) should engage in muscle strengthening activities that involve all major muscle groups on two or more days per week.
Filed under Fit Tip.