Friday, August 20, 2010

Knowing vs. Doing

How many adults in the US have no leisure-time physical activity? 25.4%

How many adults in the US are overweight? 34%

How many people know exercise can lead to weight loss? Most everyone.

How many people, if overweight, want to lose weight? Most all. 

So why aren't people doing what they know will make them lose weight, get more healthy and feel better?

People have lots of excuses. The most common of which is not enough time to exercise. With 24 hours in a day it seems there should be enough time to get a little exercise. The CDC recommends at least 150 minutes of exercise each week which is about 21 minutes a day. So how do we spend our time? According to this data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics the average American spends 5 hours a day doing leisure activities. Five hours a day! If we were exercising for even 1/2 of that 5 hours, we wouldn't have an obesity problem. 

It would seem we actually have a TV problem which, one could argue, leads to an obesity problem. We spend 2.8 hours a day watching TV! That category exceeds the other things we do by far and is more than a half of our leisure time. Last time I checked there wasn't much on TV worth 2.8 hours of daily viewing. 

If you are struggling with finding enough time to exercise, try this little idea. For the next 3 days, record how many minutes of TV you are watching. Take that number, divide it in half and commit to using that time to exercise each day. In other words, stop watching so much television! For added exercise points, combine exercise with your daily 38 minutes of socializing and communicating. Go for a walk with a friend or call your Mom during your daily stroll through the neighborhood (just watch where you are going... there are few things more obnoxious than someone talking on a cell phone and exhibiting bad pedestrian behavior). 

We know what we should do to take better care of ourselves. So, let's get doing! 

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