Want to live to 90? Here's the amount of daily exercise you need to be doing

If we want to live to 90, we need to be doing 60 minutes of exercise a day if you’re a woman, 90 if you’re a man [Photo: Getty]

When it comes to living longer we know that daily exercise could be a contributing factor, alongside eating well and, er, drinking three cups of coffee a day (maybe not bulletproof coffee though!)

But new research has revealed just how much exercise people need to do to live to 90.

The study, published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, revealed that women who do physical activity for an hour a day have a much better chance of reaching the age of 90 than those who do under 30 minutes.

Researchers from the Department of Epidemiology at the Maastricht University Medical Centre in the Netherlands analysed how body size and daily physical activity of both sexes could impact how long they’re expected to live.

The results revealed that women who do between 30 to 60 minutes of physical activity a day are just over a fifth (21 per cent) more likely to reach the age of 90 then those who do 30 minutes or less.

What’s more they found that an hour is the optimum amount of time for women to spend doing daily physical activity.

When it comes to men, those who do 90 minutes of physical activity a day are 39 per cent more likely to reach the age of 90 than those who do less than half an hour.

But how do we know what counts towards physical exercise?

“Many don’t realise that their everyday activities can help them to burn fuel, with a lot of people misinterpreting what can be considered ‘exercise’,” explains Melissa Weldon, Head Trainer at Sweat It.

“For decades, many assumed you needed to break a sweat for something to be classed as exercise, however, it has recently come to light that there are activities which we do every day which can be considered a workout and contribute to calorie burn. These activities are anything that can get your heart pumping and leave you panting for breath.”

Here are some other expert backed suggestions to squeeze in your daily target

Have more sex

“The treadmill vs. mattress debate is one questioned by many, but because people tend to use up more energy in the bedroom than they would at the gym, it’s a clear winner,” says Weldon.

Walk up the stairs and skip the lift

An oldie but a goodie. “When it comes to fat burn, climbing the stairs is one of the best exercises, strengthening the lower body, toning the calves and helping you feel better,” Melissa Weldon explains.

“Along with these benefits, it can also get your heart pumping when you are about to sit down at your desk for hours.”

Swimming is equally as good as running in terms of raising your heart rate [Photo: Getty]

Switch up your daily run

“You don’t need to run to raise your heartbeat – cycling, swimming, climbing,  horse riding, boxing, HIIT & Pilates are equally as beneficial in helping you squeeze in your daily movement,” says Matt Roberts, personal trainer to the stars and master trainer with the Fiit platform. 

Get off the bus 3 stops earlier

Throughout the day, you should seize any opportunity you get to do a bit of walking, says Weldon. “If you get the bus to work, why not try getting off 3 stops before and walk the rest of the way to your destination? You might need to allocate some extra time to get to where you need to be, but walking is a great way to stay active and improve your fitness, without the added intensity that other forms of exercise can bring.”

Hoover your way healthy

“Anytime you are up and moving you are doing cardio activity that counts as exercise but you need to keep up the pace to raise your heat rate,” says Matt Roberts. “Do the hoovering, tender to the garden, kick a ball about with the kids or take the dog for a stroll.”

Plank during ad breaks

Or in between episodes of a Netflix marathon. “A commercial break is normally around two minutes long, which is also a great duration for a couple of plank reps,” Weldon suggests.

“Planks are a great ab exercise which really target your core muscles and doing it this way means you don’t need to feel so guilty for watching TV all evening!”

Working out with a buddy can help motivate you [Photo: Getty]

Take up a new class

Sometimes, we all need a little guidance. You have the intention to go to the gym and do a tough session, but you don’t have the motivation and/or knowledge about what to do. “Opt for a class which offers everything you want and will help you get your 60 minutes of exercise in a day,” Weldon says.

There are other benefits to social workouts too. “When you are in a group you are more likely to work harder, be more accountable and enjoy it more!” explains Matt Roberts.

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