Take the First Step toward Lifelong Health
mentions the word "exercise," what's the first thought that jumps into your
head? For many, exercise means discomfort -- hours spent at the gym,
fighting through the tan, lean bodies to lift weights or pedal away on an
Fortunately, exercise comes in many forms, and almost all of them help us
stay healthy. Physical activity reduces the risk of cancer, heart disease
and many other serious health problems, and evidence suggests that something
as simple as walking may be just as effective as vigorous exercise.
Researchers compared walking, vigorous exercise and total physical
activity with the incidence of coronary artery events (heart attack or death
from heart disease) in 72,488 healthy female nurses. Data collected over the
eight-year study revealed that three hours of brisk walking per week
comparable to 1.5 hours of jogging, cycling, heavy gardening or heavy
housework) in reducing the risk of coronary events.
So don't get overwhelmed by exercise, embrace it! You don't need to slave
away in the gym to stay healthy. A brisk walk might be all it takes to get
you started on the road to lifelong health.
Manson JE, Hu FB, Rich-Edwards JW, et al. A prospective
study of walking as compared with vigorous exercise in the prevention of
coronary heart disease in women. The New England Journal of Medicine, August
26, 1999: Vol. 341, No. 9, pp650-58.