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Performing physical activity only on the weekend is as healthy as regularly spaced exercise

Training in the week can be a difficult challenge to meet. Work schedules, academic or school commitments, and family routines can prevent enough time for physical or group activity. Therefore, for most people, free time on Saturday and Sunday is a great opportunity to ride a bike, run, play soccer, do pilates or just go for a walk.

For years it was believed that it was better to space out the interval of physical exercise to obtain healthy benefits, however a recent investigation confirmed that concentrating training only on the weekend is as good as graduating it over 7 days.

Recommended levels of exercise consist of at least 150 minutes per week of moderate physical activity or 75 minutes per week of vigorous or intense physical activity, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines.

A large investigation from Jiangnan University in China evaluated 350,978 adult participants in the United States and found no significant difference in mortality rates between participants who were active only on the weekend and those who engaged in regular physical activity throughout the day. week. The study was published in the scientific journal JAMA Internal Medicine.

The researchers divided the participants into two groups called the “weekend warriors” who reached the goals in one or two sessions a week, and the “regularly active”, who spread the training over three or more days.

Compared to physically inactive participants, active participants (both weekend warriors and regularly active) had lower all-cause and cause-specific mortality rates.

This means that adults who engage in 150 minutes or more of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (or 75 minutes of vigorous activity) per week may experience similar health benefits, whether sessions are spread out over the week or concentrate on a weekend. In other words, both groups are less likely to have cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, and other conditions than sedentary people.

Therefore, a person could meet these recommendations with a 30-minute brisk walk 5 days a week or an hour and 15-minute jog once a week.

The average age of study participants was 41.4 years, and information was collected from the US National Health Interview Survey between 1997 and 2013. Participant data was linked to the US National Mortality Index up to on December 31, 2015.

“People who have active patterns of physical activity, whether they exercise on the weekend or are regularly active, experience lower all-cause and cause-specific mortality rates than inactive people. No significant differences were observed for mortality between ‘weekend warriors’ and regularly active participants after accounting for the total amount of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA),” the researchers said in their report.

For the scientists, the findings “could be useful for medical advice and for public health policies and interventions. This is good news considering that the weekend warrior physical activity pattern may be a more convenient option for many people who are striving to achieve recommended levels of physical activity.”

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José Martí
José Martí
Nacionalista cubano, poeta, filósofo, ensayista, periodista, traductor, profesor y editor.

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