Short-Term and Long-Term Benefits of Physical Activity

by Sarah

Everyone knows that being active is good for your physical health, but there are other health benefits that many of us don’t think about. Among these benefits, there are short-term and long-term benefits that can help us improve our health.   

Short-Term Benefits of Moderate-to-Vigorous Physical Activity  

  • Better sleep quality

  • Reduces blood pressure and anxiety

  • Improves mental focus  

Long-Term Benefits of Moderate-to-Vigorous Consistent Physical Activity  

  • Reduces the risk of developing dementia and decreases depression symptoms  

  • Stronger bones, better balance, and coordination reduces fall risk  

  • Better heart health and reduced cancer risks  

  • Weight loss and/or maintenance  

We all know “why” we should be active, but the real question is “how” do we fit this in? It is recommended that adults get 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity per week. So, what could that look like for you?  

  • Brisk daily walks that by the end of the week total 150 minutes. That’s only 30 minutes of walking a day but if this seems daunting, it could be as easy as three, 10-minute movement breaks 5 days per week.  

  • Jogging or running that totals 75 minutes by the end of the week. That’s only 25 minutes of higher intensity movement 3 days per week!  

  • It is also beneficial to do some strength training exercises 2 days per week.  


Other tips for getting in your physical activity:

  • Complete small bouts of exercise. Not many of us have hours and hours to exercise so use what time you have to the fullest! 

  • Plan out your week ahead. Look at what days you could “make” time rather than “find” time for exercise. 

  • Do exercises that you enjoy! Doing activities you enjoy will make it easier to stay consistent.

  • Exercise with a friend or family member to stay social and stay accountable to your exercise goals. You can even check in with someone virtually to help you stay on track!   

Now get out there and move!  
Be Well,  
Source: CDC Physical Activity Benefits and Recommendations

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