You've been asked if you're smarter than a fifth grader. Now, we're curious if you're more active than one.
Kudos if so. That would mean you’re getting more than 60 minutes of daily exercise.
An hour of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity each day is the recommended amount of exercise for children and adolescents ages 5 to 17, according to AJ Beddow, exercise physiologist at OhioHealth Ontario Health and Fitness Center.
Don’t be hard on yourself if you're not more active than a fifth grader.
Adults ages 18 to 64 should aim to get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise (brisk walking, easy jogging, water aerobics) or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise (jumping rope, running, swimming laps) — or a combination of the two — ideally spread evenly throughout the week, Beddow said.
“If you want additional health benefits, go for 300 minutes of moderate-intensity or 150 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise a week,” he said.
In addition, try incorporating muscle-strengthening exercises into your workouts two to three times a week, he suggested.
People who engage in regular physical activity are less likely to have a hip or vertebral fracture and more likely to achieve weight maintenance, as well as healthier body mass and composition, Beddow said. Additional benefits include lower rates of all-cause mortality, coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, colon and breast cancer, and depression.
Adults 65 and older should strive to hit 150 minutes of weekly moderate-intensity activity.
“If you can’t, let’s say you have a limiting factor, try doing as much as you can according to what your body will allow you to do and as close to that 150 minutes,” Beddow said.
Performing balance and mobility exercises (leg raises, toe lifts) three or more times a week provides additional health benefits.
Wondering when you'll be able to carve out time to exercise? One method that's proven helpful is creating a daily log that lists your activities in 15-minute increments.
“What people will find is that they have a couple of 15-minute windows,” Beddow said. “So during those open 15 minutes, go for a walk."
It’s OK to break your workouts up over the course of the day.
“If you were trying to accumulate 30 minutes a day, if you did 10 minutes in the morning, 10 minutes in the afternoon and 10 minutes at night, you get the same benefit doing that as you would doing 30 minutes in a row,” he said.
One other thing you could try is making exercise a family affair. Go to the park, take a walk, shoot some hoops. Just have fun with it and don’t feel like working out needs to take place at a gym.