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Exercise Tips

Regular, moderate-to-vigorous activity is important to reduce your risk of heart disease and heart attack. If you have been inactive for a long period of time, middle-aged or older, have heart disease or another medical problem, it is recommended that you get your doctor's okay before starting an exercise program.

Moderate activities such as walking, gardening, housework and dancing for a total of 30 minutes on most days can help your heart. Vigorous physical activity, such as brisk walking, jogging, dance aerobics, swimming, or singles tennis for 30-60 minutes, is sufficient at just 3-4 times per week.

Regular exercise helps burn excess calories and increase your metabolism (the rate at which your body burns calories). Even after you exercise, your body continues to burn calories at a higher rate. One pounds of fat equals 3,500 calories. Walking 2 ½ miles burns about 250 calories. Remember to always drink lots of water when you exercise.

Tips to make your day more active:

  • Ride a bike to work or to the store.
  • Walk laps around the mall or your office building at lunchtime.
  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
  • Park your car farther away and walk.
  • Take your kids with you on a short walk after dinner.
  • Use your break at work for a brisk walk or stretching.
  • Instead of sitting in a movie, walk through a street fair.
  • While you are watching TV, use a piece of exercise equipment such as a stationary bike.