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Exercise is important to staying healthy. People who are active live longer and feel better. Exercise can help you keep a healthy weight. It can delay or prevent diabetes, some cancers and heart problems.


Most adults need at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity five days per week. This includes walking quickly, mowing the lawn, dancing, swimming or bicycling. Stretching and using weights can also strengthen your body and improve your fitness.


The key is to find the right exercise for you. If it is fun, you are more likely to keep doing it. You may want to walk with a friend, join a class or plan a group bike ride. If you have not been exercising regularly, before you start, talk to your health care provider about what exercise is best for you.


how to get moving

  • If you can’t find a lot of time, do short activities during the day, like three 10-minute walks
  • Choose activities that are fun
  • Change activities, so you don’t get bored. Maybe use different jogging, walking, or biking paths. Or bike one day, and jog the next
  • Create reasons to exercise, such as parking your car farther away and walking
  • Use the stairs instead of the elevator
  • Walk or bike to work or to the store
  • Take a break at work to stretch or take a quick walk with a co-worker
  • Don’t let cold weather keep you on the couch! Find activities for the winter, such as exercising to a workout video
  • If you have children, make time to play with them outside. Set a good example!
  • Go dancing
  • Turn activities into social events—work out with family or friends
  • Set short-term goals, and reward yourself when you reach them
  • Don’t expect to see big changes right away. It can take weeks before you notice change such as weight loss
  • Make physical activity a regular part of your day, so that it becomes a habit