In the July issue of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) released new guidelines for exercise healthy individuals of all ages. Prefacing the updated recommendations, ACSM states, “The scientific evidence demonstrating the beneficial effects of exercise is indisputable, and the benefits of exercise far outweigh the risks in most adults. A program of regular exercise … beyond activities of daily living to improve and maintain physical fitness and health is essential for most adults.” If you have diabetes, you may know that regular exercise is especially helpful in maintaining glucose control.
The ACSM now recommends each of the following exercises weekly:
Cardiovascular (aerobic) exercise: Moderate-intensity cardiovascular exercise for at least 30 minutes per day, at least 5 days per week (at least 150 minutes per week) OR vigorous-intensity cardiovascular exercise for at least 20 minutes per day, at least 3 days per week (at least 75 minutes per week), OR a combination of moderate- and vigorous-intensity exercise to achieve a total energy expenditure of at least 500-1000 calories per week.
Resistance exercise: Resistance exercises for each of the major muscle groups at least 2-3 days per week.
Flexibility exercise: Flexibility exercises for each of the major muscle-tendon groups at least 2 days per week to maintain range of motion.
If you’ve tried to start or participated in an exercise program before, you know that it is easier said than done! But rest assured that getting started is the hardest part. Visit the blog for our upcoming series on exercise for tips to get motivated and start your exercise program. Remember, the physical and mental health benefits of exercise, especially for people with diabetes, are worth it!
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Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, July 2011, Volume 43, Issue 7, pp 1334-1359.