Sleep, Activity, and Nutrition are the three pillars of the Army Surgeon General’s Performance Triad that will lead Army medicine from a healthcare system to a system for health. These three components directly contribute to our individual health and wellness, as well as to overall unit readiness and resilience. Let’s take a moment to focus on the basics of Active living.
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, in the United States, less than half of adults and children (age 6 and older) exercise or perform physical activity sufficient to achieve and maintain good health. Children should perform exercise or activities for 60 minutes or more at least three times per week. Adults require 150 minutes or more of exercise or activity per week.
Regular physical activity can help:
• Control your weight
• Reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease
• Reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome
• Reduce your risk of some cancers
• Strengthen your bones and muscles
• Improve your endurance capacity
• Improve your mental health and mood
• Increase your chances of living longer
What constitutes regular physical activity? Any movement of the body of moderate intensity that increases your heart rate and works yoztur major muscle groups (legs, hips, back/abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms) qualifies. Numerous activities meet this definition: walking, running, swimming, yoga, biking, dancing, martial arts, sports, circuit training, just to name a few.
Sit less, move more! Prolonged sitting increases the risk of blood clots, diabetes, heart disease, cancer and obesity. Moving regularly throughout the day, in addition to getting the recommended amount of regular physical activity, increases blood flow, breaks down fat, burns calories, and helps to maintain a healthy weight.
So…are you active enough? If not, get moving!
• Get at least two hours and 30 minutes (or more!) of moderate intensity exercise per week.
• Move at least 10 minutes of every hour (e.g. take a walk break or hold a walking meeting, stand up to stretch, park farther away from the entrance, or take the long route to the restroom at work)
• Try to walk at least 10,000 steps during your everyday routine; 15,000 steps to help with weight loss.
For more information on Active Living visit the U.S. Public Health Command Web site at http://phc.amedd.army.mil/topics/healthyliving/al/Pages/default.aspx.