Good news for us weekend warriors. Your workout plan — that action-packed weekend followed by five days of relative inactivity while you lead your busy weekday life — might actually be better for your overall health than we used to think.
At least, that’s what a study out of the U.K. is saying. Researchers from Loughborough University and the University of Sydney analyzed the exercise and health of over 64,000 subjects over the age of 40 throughout the course of 18 years.
Conventional wisdom used to tell us that there was a hard 150 minute threshold on working out, meaning that anything less than that a week wasn’t nearly as healthy. These findings, however, suggest that all exercise, even less than the 150-minute per week mark, crammed into one day a week, will significantly reduce mortality rates.
The study looked specifically at risks associated with cancer and cardiovascular disease (CVD), finding that those who sweat it out two days a week (for, on average, 300 minutes in total) reduced their risk of CVD by 41 per cent and cancer by 18 per cent compared to those who didn’t exercise at all. And perhaps most surprisingly, even the “insufficiently active,” who reported activity once or twice a week, lowered their likelihood by 37 per cent and 14 per cent respectively.
This is great news for all the busybodies of the world who struggle to find the time to exercise regularly. Let this be incentive to get out and get at it whenever we can, even if it’s just once a week. Because science has finally confirmed what we all want to hear: some exercise is much better than no exercise at all.