Why Less Exercise May Be Enough Exercise

Why Less Exercise May Be Enough Exercise

Finding it hard to squeeze in your workout or your walk this time of year? Don't sweat it. Sometimes, less still cuts the mustard.

As long as you pick up the pace, that is. In one study, people who cut back on their walks but turned up the burn when they did get out there still boosted their cardiovascular endurance.

Keeping the Pace
Sure, frequent exercise is still better for you—for a bunch of reasons, ranging from better cholesterol levels to better weight control. But the research shows that you can cut back a little on frequency and still keep yourself in pretty good shape if you make some adjustments. And it's a good idea to do so, because then your body will be ready, willing and able to do more when you get more time. (Not sure how to pick up the pace? Here's an easy trick to help you do it.)

No Time? No Excuse
Why should you care about your cardiovascular endurance, anyway? Because a 5-year study showed that a mere 10 percent improvement lowered people's risk of mortality by 15 percent, compared with no cardiorespiratory improvement. So don't chuck your routine out altogether this holiday season. Cut back if you must, but work harder. Or chunk your 30-minute walks into three 10-minute sessions. Your heart will thank you in the New Year.

Hate to sweat? Here are a few benefits to easy, breezy workouts.

Take the first steps to growing younger and healthier with the RealAge Test.

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