You’re 40 minutes into spin class when you look at your watch and realize…you’re only 15 minutes into spin class.
If you’ve ever found yourself complaining about how damn long it takes to exercise, listen up: According to a new study, exercise doesn't have to be prolonged in order to be beneficial. Excellent.
The research, published in the Journal of the American Heart Association, looked at activity tracker data from 4,840 men and women over the age of 40. Scientists determined how many minutes per day each person had spent in moderate or vigorous physical activity. (Moderate activity was defined as brisk walking, and vigorous activity referred to workouts similar to jogging.)
Unsurprisingly, researchers determined that moving strongly influenced longevity. As in, people who moved more often reduced their risk of dying younger. What is surprising is that it didn’t matter how they accumulated those minutes. That means that, yes, going to the gym comes with a whole lot of benefits, but those same benefits can be reaped if you walk sporadically in short, repeated spurts.
Dr. William Kraus, a professor at Duke University who conducted the study with researchers from the National Cancer Institute, told The New York Times, “The message is that all physical activity counts.” Good enough for us.
So basically, it's fine if you skip out on marathon gym sessions (and literal marathons) in favor of shorter walks. Just make sure to do them often.