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How much aerobic activity should I do?

The best recommendation is to get 30 minutes of moderate-intense activity most days of the week.  Your goal should be to exercise in the form of strength and/or aerobic activity 3-4 times per week, more is desired.  Another goal should be to make this activity continuous for 30 minutes or more to receive full benefit.  If you are only able complete 15-20 minute bouts of exercise then this will be better than not completing any exercise at all.  However, 30-minutes or more is preferred.

From the above, your next goal will be to figure out what you are using this aerobic activity for?  Are you new to exercise?  What is your specific goal?  Answer these questions and let me know so I can assist you to develop a more direct plan for your needs.

How much aerobic activity you should do really depends on your current fitness level, exercise history, and goals. For general health benefits you should do 30 minutes of aerobic activity, 5-7 days of the week. This can include any type of activity that increases your heart rate and breathing rate such as walking your dog, dancing, mowing the lawn, running, biking, or even taking the stairs instead of the elevator. If you find that 30 minutes is a little too challenging, start with 5-10 minutes and gradually work up to 30 minutes. You could even choose to do three 10 minute exercise sessions throughout the day. Research has shown that performing three bouts of 10 minutes is just as effective as performing one 30 minute session.

If your goal is to improve your level of fitness you should perform 20-60 minutes of aerobic activity at a moderate to high intensity (between 60-90% maximum heart rate*) 3-5 day of the week.

*Maximum heart rate = 220 - age

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.