06/22/2012 04:09 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

DYK: How Much Exercise?

I'm always pressed by people who want to know what they need to do for the bare minimum of fitness. Of course, many ask how to train for marathons. But there is always someone who says "do I have to do ALL that?"

So here it is...

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), adults need a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity a week in order to improve overall health and fitness and reduce risk for many chronic diseases. Moderate-intensity exercise is defined by activities as simple as brisk walking.

Before you launch into "OMG 150 MINUTES!! THAT'S CRAZY!!" do the math. That comes out to 21 minutes and 25 seconds a day. So for 22 minutes every day, you need to walk briskly in order to improve your overall health.

Now, that might not seem like much, but many people aren't even aware of how little they move in the course of a day. Our lives have become very simplified by technology. Consequently, it is absolutely essential that you become more aware of your daily activity.

The best part of the CDC's information is that the 22 minutes (I'm optimistically rounding up) don't have to be done all at once. You can break it into sections.


Tomorrow at lunch time, find a place to eat that is an 11-minute walk from where you are at that moment -- if you make your own lunch, pack it up for a little picnic. Take the 11-minute brisk walk, have lunch, and then... walk briskly back.

It's that simple. But you have to do it. Do it. You'll feel great.

If you'd like more examples of moderate intensity physical activity, check out this list.

If you have any questions about your health and fitness, shoot me an email at I love questions! That's why I'm here.

Rock on!

For more by Michael Feigin, M.S., C.S.C.S., click here.

For more on personal health, click here.