150 minutes of exercise a week could boost life span by more than three years

fitness and activity
  • Survey* of 6,600 people over 12 months found that sedentary people who increased activity levels to 150 minutes a week (21 minutes a day) – currently the government recommended level, saw life expectancy increase of 3.1 years
  • People who increased their activity levels to 90 minutes saw an increase of almost three years (2.7 years) and exercising just 60 minutes a week saw an increase of more than two years (2.4 years)
  • The research was calculated through analysis of each individual’s ‘Vitality Age’, an aggregate measure of wellness that evaluates the gap between physical body age and actual age. By surveying members before and after they made changes to their everyday behaviour, the data pinpointed the impact of behaviour on life expectancy
  • Further research found the main barriers preventing people from taking part in sport or exercise include time constraints (31%), the expense (21%) and people not enjoying it (19%)
  • Vitality’s ‘Everyday Athlete’ campaign aims to inspire the nation to make small changes to realise lasting health improvement, whether it’s getting off the bus a stop early, walking up the stairs rather than taking the lift, or walking the dog for an extra 10 minutes a day.


Vitality Ambassador Jessica Ennis-Hill said: “I am delighted to support the Everyday Athlete campaign – it’s a fantastic way to spread the message about the benefits of health and wellbeing in a fun and inspiring way. I truly believe in the core message of the campaign, which is that everyone, regardless of their current health and fitness, can take small steps to live a happier and healthier life. Being an Everyday Athlete doesn’t mean you have to run a marathon or climb a mountain, it just means changing everyday behaviours such as walking up the stairs rather than taking the lift, or getting off a bus stop or two early to walk the rest of the way to where you want to go. This campaign shows how easy it is for people to make small changes that can really benefit their short and long term health.”


Ten life hacks to becoming an ‘Everyday Athlete’

Everyday Athlete activities Calories burnt in a week (Women) Calories burnt in a year (Women) Calories burnt in a week (Men) Calories burnt in a year (Men) Details
One hour of gardening 279 14508 332 17264 One hour of vigorous gardening a week, multiplied by 52 weeks
Walking upstairs at work daily 93 4464 111 5328 Assuming a total of 5 minutes of walking upstairs a day, based on 48 working weeks in the year
Walking around house while carry an infant 285 14820 339 17628 Assuming a 15lb baby and walking 10 mins a day
Getting off the bus a stop early and walking 175 9100 208 10816 Assuming the walk between bus stops is 5 minutes each way, 5 times a week
Taking the baby for a walk in the pram 349 18148 415 21580 Assuming a 20 minute walk 5 days a week, based on 48 working weeks in the year
Doing 30 minutes of standing at the office everyday 385 20020 460 23920 Details calculated usinghttp://www.juststand.org/tabid/637/default.aspx
One hour of house work a week 210 10920 249 12948 Assuming one hour of vigorous house cleaning
Washing the car once a week 157 8164 187 9724 Assuming 45 minutes of car cleaning
Walking to the station everyday 524 25152 623 32396 Details.  Assuming a 30 minute walk a day, 5 times a week, based on 48 working weeks in the year
Walking the dog an extra ten minutes a day 244 12688 291 15132 An extra 70 minutes

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