Utahns need to move more every day

Jul 13, 2018, 8:00 AM | Updated: 8:15 am
CDC stock image

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah is doing better than other states at meeting the recommendations for exercise. But there’s room for improvement.

The CDC says only about a quarter of adults get enough exercise in their spare time. It’s around 30 percent of adults in Utah who get the recommended 150 minutes of moderate physical activity a week, or 75 minutes of vigorous activity.

One long Saturday bike ride or a weekly hike would cover it.

“Utah is fantastic about recreational and sport-related activity. We are not so good at daily, moving around, being physically active as part of our normal way of doing things,” said Dr. Brett McIff, the physical activity coordinator at the Utah Department of Health.

He’d also like to see more people add in strength training.

“It can be lifting weights, it can be doing things with resistance bands, it can also be doing more yard work — carrying plats, moving mulch around; that could also qualify,” he said.

Dr. McIff says we’ve out-engineered ourselves of ways to be active. People used to walk to school, church and local stores. They used to garden in the evenings instead of watching shows.

Exercise not only prevents or helps with Type 2 Diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and other ailments, it can also boost mental health.

“It doesn’t take that much. Being able to fit in a half hour, 20 minutes of physical activity throughout your day, is going to have a lot of benefit,” he said.

Colorado had the highest percentage of adults meeting the guidelines. Many of the states that failed are in the southeast.

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Utahns need to move more every day