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Get healthy

The benefits

Did you know it’s medically proven that people who do regular physical activity have:

  • up to a 35% lower risk of coronary heart disease and stroke
  • up to a 50% lower risk of type 2 diabetes
  • up to a 50% lower risk of colon cancer
  • up to a 20% lower risk of breast cancer
  • a 30% lower risk of early death
  • up to an 83% lower risk of osteoarthritis
  • up to a 68% lower risk of hip fracture
  • a 30% lower risk of falls (among older adults)
  • up to a 30% lower risk of depression
  • up to a 30% lower risk of dementia

Easy ways to improve your health

Remember that active travel can be the ideal way to reach your physical activity targets without going to any expense or inconvenience. Here are just a few ways active travel could be used to help you live a more active lifestyle:

  • Walking and cycling instead of driving are fantastic ways to boost your daily activity, without needing set aside any extra time like you would to visit a gym.
  • If you’re catching the bus or tram, why not get off one stop early and walk the rest of the way to your destination.
  • If you’re driving in to the City, why not make use of the thousands of free car parking spaces at Nottingham’s Park and Ride sites.
  • If you’re looking for a great day out that won’t empty your wallet we’ve got lots of information on fun walking and cycling activities going on here in Nottingham. Visit our walking pages here and cycling pages here for more details about guided walks, guided cycle rides, free cycling lessons and more.

How much should we do?

Doctor’s recommendations for physical activity levels for adults are listed below. For more information about these recommendations, and for further guidelines for children and older people, click here.

  • Adults should aim to be active daily. Over a week, activity should add up to at least 150 minutes (2½ hours) of moderate intensity activity in bouts of 10 minutes or more – one way to approach this is to do 30 minutes on at least 5 days a week.
  • Alternatively, comparable benefits can be achieved through 75 minutes of vigorous intensity activity spread across the week or combinations of moderate and vigorous intensity activity.
  • Adults should also undertake physical activity to improve muscle strength on at least two days a week.
  • All adults should minimise the amount of time spent being sedentary (sitting) for extended periods.

What counts?

Moderate-intensity aerobic activity means you’re working hard enough to raise your heart rate and break a sweat. One way to tell if you’re working at a moderate intensity is if you can still talk but you can’t sing the words to a song.

Examples of moderate-intensity aerobic activities are:

  • walking fast
  • water aerobics
  • riding a bike on level ground or with few hills
  • playing doubles tennis
  • pushing a lawn mower

Daily chores such as shopping, cooking or housework don’t count towards your 150 minutes. This is because the effort needed to do them isn’t hard enough to get your heart rate up.

Share your stories!

Have you made a change to include active travel in your lifestyle? If so we’d love for you to share your stories with us – click to contact us.

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