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Does Working Out Help You Live Longer?

March 11, 2015 2 min read

If two people were born on the exact same day and one of them led a sedentary lifestyle and one of them worked out and led an active lifestyle, which one of them would live longer?

That question sounds like one of those test questions from grade school, but really who would live longer? Not to be morbid but obviously anyone could die in some freak accident, but let’s put that aside for now.

We all know how good we feel after a workout, endorphins are pumping through our brains and many times a good workout can energize you throughout your entire day.

Harvard professor, Dr. I-Min Lee of Brigham and Women’s Hospital, published a paper entitled “Leisure Time Physical Activity of Moderate to Vigorous Intensity and Mortality: A Large Pooled Cohort Analysis.” In her paper she confirmed that yes indeed people who workout live longer.

She found that if a middle aged person gets 150 minutes of moderate exercise (example being a brisk walk) per week they can expect to gain an extra 7 minutes to their life for each 1 minute spent working out.

Dr. Lee’s paper pooled data from six large studies that followed over 650,000 people over the course of ten years. Her paper showed the people who got the recommended amount of exercise gained 3.4 years to their life.

That’s an extra three and a half years almost, gained to your life just for going on a jog, doing yoga or following Lisa on the Daily Hiit. That is truly amazing!

The Founder and CEO of the International Council on Active Aging in Vancouver, Canada found that older people who engage in physical activity of some kind show dramatic improvements in abilities and functions. Experts suggest that many illnesses that used to be attributed to aging now are thought to be caused by inactivity.

There really is no excuse not be active in life; we have created so many activities that can keep you feeling young and healthy. Activities that are actually fun too like going on a hike, yoga, Pilates, Barre, Pound, rock climbing, kick boxing, etc. Those are just a few but the list is endless and someone is always coming up with the next new, cool way to be active.

The average life expectancy is 78 in the U.S. Imagine how much time you can add to your life just by working out and being active, if that isn’t incentive to get your butt back in the gym I don’t know what is.


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