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Study Says Weekend Warriors Don't Need To Exercise During The Week

Study Says Weekend Warriors Don't Need To Exercise During The Week

This included weekend warrior participants, who crammed their physical activity into one or two weekly sessions of moderate or vigorous exercise, as well as both regularly and insufficiently active respondents.

A new study suggests that one or two workouts on the weekend can reduce the risk of death nearly as regular exercise can.

Tough it is better to exercise on a regular basis, the researchers say that one or two workout sessions could reduce the risk of death as much as regular exercise can.

But it can be tough to squeeze into a schedule: Health experts recommend about 150 minutes of moderate activity, or 75 minutes of vigorous, breath-sapping exercise, each week. Meanwhile, the risk of death from cardiovascular disease was 40 percent lower and 18 per cent lower for cancer.

"Millions of people enjoy doing sport once or twice a week, but they may be concerned that they are not doing enough", said Gary O'Donovan, a physical activity researcher and author on the study at Loughborough University.

The work week flies by so quickly many of us are left squeezing exercise time on the weekend.

Can limiting your exercise to just the weekend be as good as doing it five days a week?

The researchers found that people who exercised one or two days a week, but didn't meet physical activity guidelines also showed reductions in their risk of death during the study period from any cause, cardiovascular disease and cancer.




Even people who get less exercise than recommended have less risk than folks who don't break a sweat at all. To begin with, this was an observational study, so it can't prove a direct link between specific exercise patterns and lower risks of premature death.

But the new study suggests that as long as people exercise at least once a week, even if they do not hit these targets, their chance of an early death is significantly reduced.

Moderate exercise like brisk walking or swimming is typically safe for most people.

"However, every little counts and just 10 minutes of physical activity will provide health benefits".

Similarly, insufficient exercise and regular exercise were tied to lower risks of cancer mortality (HR 0.83, 95% CI 0.73-0.94 and HR 0.79, 95% CI 0.66-0.94, respectively).

Even those who were deemed "insufficiently active", or those who only completed the bare minimum in exercise hours, lowered their mortality risks by 37% for CVD and 14% for cancer, the study states.

"We tend to read these high-profile media stories of course about the hockey player that you know dies on the ice, but I think if you look at the scientific evidence it would suggest that that single, weekly bout of exercise is actually beneficial", said Prof.

Hannah Arem, PhD, an assistant professor with the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University in Washington, D.C., who co-wrote a commentary accompanying the study, said the new research is important.

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