Exercise for inactive people: Good news

Exercise newbies get big health benefits

woman-exercise-ball-4-15 320x320

Good news for inactive people: The less active you are, the more you can improve your health through exercise.

If you tend to be inactive, but have thoughts of getting fit this spring, you may be interested to know that starting and consistently following an exercise program can bring about more significant health benefits than those achieved by someone who is fit (it becomes more difficult to improve when you are already fit).

The good news about exercise for inactive people is this: The less active you are, the more you can improve your health through exercise. And, older individuals (65+) who become fit improve their health and lifespan.

Studies show that regular exercise improves cardiovascular fitness, lowers blood pressure and improves metabolism — all of which are important benefits for heart health.

How to start an exercise program

Participating in a strength-training program at least twice a week is a good start, with aerobic exercise added as much as possible throughout the week (30 minutes of moderate activity most days of the week). Also, do a self-assessment [see Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire below, which is recommended by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM)]. Results from this assessment suggest whether you should consult with a healthcare provider before starting an exercise program. Continue reading

Exercise: The magic medicine

30 minutes per day is the single best thing you can do for your health

woman and exercise ball

Whatever exercise you choose, 30 minutes a day is the single best thing you can do for your health.

Michele Derheim, director of clinical operations at the University of Michigan Frankel Cardiovascular Center and a registered nurse, is a keen supporter of exercise.

“Whether it’s a simple walk or an intense workout, the reduction in disease risks as a result of exercise is phenomenal,” Derheim says. “Whether you’re at your ideal weight, or 20 pounds overweight, participating in some form of exercise has health benefits in the prevention of heart disease, diabetes and joint problems.”

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Good news about exercise for inactive people

Greater improvement possible for those just starting out

green dumbbells

If you’re inactive, starting and following an exercise program can bring about more significant health benefits than for someone who’s already fit.

If you tend to be inactive, but are thinking about getting fit, you may be interested to know that starting and consistently following an exercise program can bring about more significant health benefits than those achieved by someone who’s fit (it becomes more difficult to improve when already fit).

According to Theresa Gracik, director of the University of Michigan Preventive Cardiology Cardiac Rehabilitation Program, “The more de-conditioned you are, the more you can improve your health through exercise.” And, she says, older individuals (65+) who become fit make big strides toward improving their health and lifespan.

Continue reading