Recent research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association has shown that regular exercise is one of the keys to living a long and healthy life. No surprise there, right? The study showed that people who exercise regularly have an 80% better life-length projection than those who don’t, and even had data showing that a lack of regular exercise is more detrimental to health than smoking, diabetes, coronary artery disease or high blood pressure. I know, nuts.

So if you have the power to do more for your long-term health, why wouldn’t you? Here are a few of the best forms of exercise to help you lengthen your life and set yourself up for a healthier future.

Walking

Photo of a man walking by the beach with his dog

The good news is that you don’t need to start doing crossfit to experience long-term health benefits. Walking counts too. Aim for about 20-30 minutes of brisk walking a day to achieve 150 minutes of exercise a week. Aside from lengthening your life, walking offers benefits such as reduced risk of heart disease and stroke, stronger bones, and better balance.

Swimming

Swimming and water-based exercises are favoured by a lot of older people because they carry a lower risk of bone breakage. Aside from the reduce stress impact on the body, swimming also helps with muscle strength and tone, and helps build your endurance.

Biking

I’m a big fan of biking just because of how practical it is. It gets you from A to B like a car, but simultaneously works your muscles? Not bad in my opinion. Beyond the obvious transportational benefits, biking is great because it increases joint mobility and improves your posture. Why not try biking a few days a week?

Short interval, high-intensity workouts

These are good for improving your metabolic condition, and help you lose weight and develop better endurance. Want to be 70 and thriving? Go short and intense!

Yoga

We already know yoga helps us to relax and leads to better sleep, but the practice has more physical benefits beyond these. It increases the health and density of your bones, lowers bad cholesterol and raises good cholesterol, improves digestion, and helps to prevent the breakdown of your cartilage and joints.

Whether you pick one of these exercises or another, staying active is a safe and straightforward way to improve your quality of life, both now and in the long run. You can track all of the exercises you do in the Lifesum app!

Femi A-Williams is a health and fitness convert trying to reconcile a healthy lifestyle and a happy food life. She is 80% whole grain and 20% donut.

All posts by Femi A-Williams