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Thinking about running?

Why should I choose running as my activity?

Running can be done anywhere, it burns more calories than any other mainstream exercise and is free. You can also start with walking. Walking is simple and also free. It is one of the easiest ways to become healthier, get more active and lose weight. Often overlooked as a form of exercise. Walking briskly can help you burn excess calories, makes your heart healthier and builds stamina.

Both activities can reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and cancer by up to 50% and lower your risk of early death by up to 30%. It can help keep your weight under control and boost your mood. All physical activities can boost self-esteem, sleep quality, mood and energy, alongside reducing your risk of depression, stress, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

What are the benefits from running?

Running can reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and cancer by up to 50% and lower your risk of early death by up to 30%. It can help keep your weight under control and boost your mood. All physical activities can boost self-esteem, sleep quality, mood and energy, alongside reducing your risk of depression, stress, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. It can help you to live longer and healthier. Learn more about health benefits.

How much activity should an adult do? (adult aged 19 to 64)

An adult should do any type of activity every day. All activity is good, and the more the better, from walking to martial arts. Table below shows a number of activities.

“If exercise were a pill, it would be one of the most cost-effective drugs ever invented,” says Dr Nick Cavill, a health promotion consultant. 

As an adult you should aim to:

  1. Do physical activity every day. Some activity is better than none, and more is even better.
  2. On two days in the week do strengthening exercises on all the major muscles (back. Hip, legs, chest, abdomen, shoulder and arms) 
  3. Weekly do either (depending on level of fitness)
    1. 150 minutes moderate activity
    2. 75 minutes vigorous activity  (single or over two days)
    3. A mixture of the two above
  4. Reduce sitting and lying down for long periods, and introduce breaks with activity.

Table: Suggested Activities 

Level of activityModerate aerobic Vigorous intensityStrengthen muscle 
Typeaerobicaerobicstrengthen
List of activities
(not exhaustive)
brisk walking
water aerobics
riding a bike
dancing
doubles tennis
pushing a lawn mower
hiking
Rollerblading
jogging or running
swimming fast
riding a bike fast or on hills
walking up the stairs
sports, like football, rugby, netball and hockey
skipping rope
aerobics
gymnastics
martial arts
carrying heavy shopping bags
yoga
pilates
tai chi
lifting weights
working with resistance bands
doing exercises that use your own body weight, such as push-ups and sit-ups
heavy gardening, such as digging and shovelling
wheeling a wheelchair
lifting and carrying children
How do I know I am working at the level?It will raise your heart rate, and make you breathe faster and feel warmer. You should be able to talk, but not sing.With effort moderate activity can become vigorous.You will breathe hard and fast and will struggle to say more than a few words without pausing for breath.You should do enough of the exercises so that you need a short rest before repeating the activity.

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Interested in running, are you a runner, please take a look at our new section in 2021 all for runners.

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