16,000 Australians die sooner than they should because they do not exercise enough….

This was a headline from the Adelaide Advertiser, 13/8/12 – if there ever was a statistic to get us moving, then surely this goes close?

Most of us understand the strong link between physical inactivity and many ‘lifestyle’ diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type II diabetes and cancers but perhaps we are unaware of the enormity of the issue in our society. 61% of Australian adults and 25% of children are overweight or obese and only 50% of South Australians exercise enough to benefit their health (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare).

So what are the barriers that get in the way of us moving? Mostly we live in a society where ‘movement’ is no longer a necessity and in fact ‘inactivity’ has become the norm. We can build a successful career in an office, we have cars that ferry us from A to B and we have a range of time saving, portable devices so that information and communication are always at our finger tips. We are also ‘busy’ and simply don’t have a plan for exercise!

Step 1 is for each of us to achieve the minimum recommendation which is 150 minutes of moderate exercise each week – in its simplest form this can look like a 30 minutes walk, 5 times each week.

On a practical level, this means scheduling the times for these walks or exercise sessions in your diary and keeping this understanding of the benefits of physical activity in the front of your mind to maintain motivation. Get moving!

– Kristin Lewis

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