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Regular exercise, especially aerobic exercise (exercise of an adequate duration to benefit the heart and lungs), is very beneficial; overall, it can increase one’s longevity and quality of life.

Research shows that exercise can support health in the following ways:*

  • Prevents/reduces the effects of many chronic diseases: Exercise can help people prevent diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure.
  • Helps manage weight: Burning calories is essential to losing extra weight. The best way to burn calories is to find and maintain a regular exercise routine.
  • Boosts energy: A better working circulatory system can invigorate a person. Regular exercise increases circulation by getting your heart and lungs to work better.
  • Improves mood: Regular exercise helps a person’s body to feel better. When people feel better physically, they tend to feel better emotionally.
  • Supports better sleep: Regular exercise can relax a person so that they can fall asleep more easily at night.

If a person has not been exercising regularly for a long time, it is important to consult a healthcare provider before starting a program to determine what exercise regimen would be the most beneficial. One does not need to run marathons to be healthy. In setting exercise goals, 30 minutes a day 5 times per week is a good target to aim for.

With all the good things that exercise promotes, it is time to get off the couch and get moving for a healthier, happier life! 

Exercise Resources

American Heart Association / Guidelines for Physical Activity

Baltimore City Parks and Recreation

Maryland State Education / Physical Education

YMCA of Central Maryland


*Mayo Clinic Staff, 2009. Fitness. Accessed Dec. 21, 2010.

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