This week brings yet more evidence, as if we needed any, that an active lifestyle is good for your health. A study has revealed that walking for one hour each day significantly reduces the incidence of breast cancer in post-menopausal women. Regular vigorous activity reduced the risks even more. These findings are in line with most of the recent science with research always revealing that exercise is crucial, particularly in the case of cancer and heart disease.
Exercise also keeps your weight under control and being overweight certainly affects your health so why do so many people ignore the messages and stick with their sedentary lifestyles? I am shocked to hear that a recent poll has discovered that one in four adults walk for only one hour per week! At this rate evolution will see us losing our legs. With cars on the drive and televisions in the home most people are taking the lazy route and ignoring the need to exercise altogether. Add to this the poor diets which are prevalent and there is a public health disaster brewing.
Cheap and Easy
The crazy thing is that getting active is easy and cheap. Walking is free for heaven’s sake and many homes have recording devices of one kind or another which mean that the residents never have to miss their favourite TV programmes if they do venture into the great outdoors. Exercise doesn’t have to mean boring sessions in the gym. You can play any number of sports or take up dancing. A game of badminton with your mates or whirling around to the Spanish music will all keep you fit whilst having great fun at the same time. Surely there is something for everyone out there. People just have to find the things they enjoy. If you enjoy something you will keep at it.
Fun with Friends
As for me, I have taken to walking everywhere local and try to leave the car at home whenever I can. Walking doesn’t even have to take longer either as I swear that many people waste half of their lives looking for parking spaces! I must have saved a fortune in parking fees and fuel into the bargain. I also make regular visits to the indoor ski slope with my friends. This is great fun and at £60 for unlimited use each month it is fabulous value too. If I visit three times each week that is just £5 for an evening’s entertainment and I can’t sit on my bum in the cinema for that.
Life or Death?
Exercise doesn’t have to be boring and it can actually be the highlight of the day. It gets you out and about, is something to do with your friends, it keeps your weight down and it will almost certainly prolong your life. It is, therefore astonishing than 25% of people can’t even manage an hour’s walking each week. There was a line in the movie “The Shawshank Redemption” which seems appropriate. “Get busy living or get busy dying”. I quite fancy the survival route myself.
Article by Sally Stacey