A quick guide to healthy exercise

Regular exercise is an important part of staying healthy and living well. This comprehensive guide will outline some simple ways to stay in shape and maintain a strong, healthy body.

A quick guide to healthy exercise

Simple exercises you should try

  • Balance exercise: Examples include agility games and tai chi. Exercise a few minutes per day.
  • Flexibility exercise: Examples include stretching, yoga and pilates. Exercise at least twice a week.
  • Strength exercise: Examples include weight training, exercise bands and calisthenics. Each main muscle group needs to be exercised twice a week.
  • Endurance/aerobic exercise: Examples include fast walking, biking, aerobics and rowing. Complete a 30-minute sessions at least three times a week.
  • Hobbies and passions: Examples include sports, fishing, knitting, gardening and bird-watching. Complete this at least once a day.
  • Active daily living: For example, taking the stairs, getting outdoors and living energetically. Complete this exercise as often as you can.

If you do only one thing...

Gardening is one of those rare multiple-benefit activities, providing endurance, strength, and flexibility activities all in one. How? Picture an early spring day when you're preparing your vegetable garden for the first planting. Digging in the dirt builds muscle strength as well as endurance. So does loading shovels of compost and topsoil into the wheelbarrow, wheeling it over to the garden, dumping it, and turning the earth over as you work it in. When the time comes to plant the tomato and squash seedlings, you bend and stretch to get them in the ground. Here are some other great workouts from gardening.

  • Cutting the grass with a walking mower (preferably manual) provides a great endurance workout.
  • Raking leaves provides flexibility and endurance benefits.
  • Hauling compost, dirt and weeds is a good strength-building workout.
  • Pulling weeds is a wonderful way to stretch muscles stiff from too much sitting.

When not to exercise

You want to do some form of physical activity every day, if possible. However, if you have any of the following conditions or symptoms, either take a day off or check with your doctor first.

  • A cold, the flu or an infection with a fever
  • More fatigue than usual
  • A swollen or painful muscle or joint
  • A new or undiagnosed symptom
  • Chest pain or an irregular, rapid, or fluttery heartbeat
  • Shortness of breath
  • A hernia with symptoms

Having an active lifestyle may be easier than you think. Keep this guide in mind and complete some simple exercises to stay in shape.

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
Close menu