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Does your workout feel tough?

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Many people want to begin an exercise regimen, but feel daunted by current fitness guidelines. A new study published in Circulation, the Journal of the American Heart Association, has some good news for those who are unable or unwilling to follow exercise recommendations

Many people want to begin an exercise regimen, but feel daunted by current fitness guidelines. A new study published in Circulation, the Journal of the American Heart Association, has some good news for those who are unable or unwilling to follow exercise recommendations. A group of older men participating in the study were monitored while exercising. Monitoring included heart rate, and a report how they felt. Basing exercise intensity on how a person feels is called Rating of Perceived Exertion. For this measure a person describes his/her level of physical effort during activity using words such as "weak," "somewhat strong" or "strong." The results reported that men who described their workouts to be challenging were at lower risk for developing health problems-even if their workout did not meet current guidelines on physical activity. This means that even if a workout feels difficult it may be enough to ward off adverse health conditions. So if your workout feels difficult, keep it at that level even if you are below what the sign on the wall says. Over time and with persistence your workout will become easier. When it does, move it up a notch-eventually you will be working within suggested guidelines.

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