This workout is three times better for your health than walking, new study finds



There is no denying that walking is a great form of exercise. It’s easy, you can do it anywhere, and no expensive equipment or subscription is required to get started. And for many people, achieving a specific daily goal, whether it’s 7,000 or 10,000 steps, is enough to feel energized and healthy.

However, new research suggests that there is a workout that is not only more effective than these daily walks, but is three times more beneficial than walking for your health.

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A 2021 study published in the European Heart Journal followed 2,070 adults who participated in the Framingham Heart Study, measuring the amount of exercise they did using accelerometers.

What the researchers found was that moderate or vigorous exercise, defined as 100 to 129 steps per minute or more than 130 steps per minute, respectively, was ideal for the health and general well-being of the subjects. study, and in fact three times more beneficial than occasional walking (defined as a pace between 60 and 99 steps per minute).

“We expected to find that higher amounts of moderate to vigorous physical activity, such as exercise, would lead to better peak exercise performance, but we were surprised to find that higher intensity activity was also more effective than walking in improving the body’s ability to start and maintain lower exertion levels, ”explained Matthew Nayor, MD, MPH, cardiologist at Boston Medical Center, assistant professor of medicine at Boston University and lead author of the study.

“If your goal is to improve your fitness or slow down the inevitable decline in fitness that occurs with aging, perform at least a moderate level of exertion. [through intentional exercise] is more than three times more efficient than just walking at a relatively slow pace, ”added Nayor.

Additionally, Nayor’s team found that more vigorous activity can actually combat some of the health issues associated with a sedentary lifestyle.


“We observed that individuals with higher than average steps per day, or moderate to vigorous physical activity, had above average fitness levels, regardless of how much time they spent in a sedentary lifestyle. So it seems that much of the negative effect that a sedentary lifestyle has on fitness can be offset by higher levels of activity and exercise, ”Nayor explained.

So, if you’re looking to improve your overall health and fitness, you don’t need to trade those daily walks for a strenuous exercise routine. You might just want to pick up the pace a bit.

For more incentive to put on those sneakers, check out What a Daily Walking Habit Your Body Makes After 60, According to Science, and for the latest health and fitness news delivered to your inbox, subscribe. to our newsletter!

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