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Let's Get The Title Of 'Fittest Nation on Earth'!

Updated: Jan 11, 2021

National Health and Wellness was June 6! The goal behind this to make Canada the ‘Fittest Nation on Earth’!

To help us to that title, we need to get the recommended amount of physical activity! So what is recommended? The following are the Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines:

For ages 0-4 years it is recommended at least 180min of physical activity of any intensity per day.

For ages 5-17 years, it is recommended at least 60min of moderate to vigorous intensity per day.

For everyone over 18 years, it is recommended at least 150min of moderate to vigorous activity per week - that works out to be about 20min per day.

We want to think about including both muscle and bone strengthening activities as well as cardiovascular activity. Just remember, we don't have to do the full recommended amount in one bout of time. Break it up throughout the day in 10min bouts!

You can see the full guidelines for all the age groups at

Did you notice that the guidelines indicate the intensity of exercise?

Intensity is important. But how do you want intensity you are working at? Moderate- to vigorous-intensity activity includes all activities that make you huff and puff.

During moderate intensity you should still be able to have a conversation but are starting to work up a sweat.

Vigorous intensity means you’re out of breath and can’t maintain a constant conversation.

What's the point? Why do we want to be active? What are you going to get out of this whole thing?

Being physically active is important at every age; from infants to older adults. There are many benefits to be physically active. If we develop activity habits when we are young, it makes it easier to maintain those habits are we get older.

It has been shown that young children who meet the activity guidelines are less likely to be overweight, have better motor skill and cognitive development, have better bone and muscle strength and have better measures of heart health.

In children and youth that meet the recommended levels, they are less likely to be overweight, have better bone health, and better scores for mental health. This has been especially true for kids who participate in higher intensity activities.

For adults, we see a significant reduction in risk of all-cause mortality, cardiovascular disease, stroke, high blood pressure, colon and breast cancer as well as type 2 diabetes.

In older adults (64+ years), they are less likely to develop numerous types of chronic diseases like heart disease, type 2 diabetes, depression, certain cancers, dementia, disability and loss of function.

We finding out more and more about the positive effects of exercise on mental health! Not only will you get the physical benefits from exercise, you will also get mental and emotional benefits too!

How can you get those minutes in?

Here is some inspiration to help you get creative in finding ways to move!

Move as a family!

  • Take your partner, your kids, your parents or your pets for a walk outside

  • Explore your neighbourhood or a trail on bikes

  • Set up an obstacle course in your backyard or even in your house. Together you can create one using chairs, tables, blankets, pillows etc

  • Play soccer or hockey

  • Try out a three legged race or egg on a spoon

  • Play tag

You can incorporate movement into your daily life and social life!

  • You can sign up for a recreational sports league with friends or even as a solo athlete. Dodgeball, pickeball, volleyball, slow pitch, floor hockey, ultimate frisbee....

  • The weather is getting nice out and we all want to be outside! Lawn games are awesome! Bocce ball, Kubb, ladder golf, spikeball, giant janga, corn hole, can jam. There are so many out there!

  • I like to set alarms on my phone with labels like 'take a lap' where I go an touch every wall in my apartment. or push-ups, or 'dance like no one is watching' or 'playtime' which for me usually means handstand or rolling around or trying to balance on my exercise ball.

  • You can make an appointment with yourself the same way you make an appointment to see your dentist or eye doctor.

  • Use your break time at work to take a lap or 2 around the building or office.

Not sure you want to think you can start or maintain your new activity habits?

Finding a place where you can find accountability and motivation can help! Find your community or supports. you could:

  • Join a running group

  • Set up 'movement dates' with your partner, friends, parents - create ongoing appointments for a walk together for example or zoom a virtual workout together.

  • Connect with Facebook or Instagram groups or pages like the Strong Body Balance Page

  • Find live virtual classes.Signing up for a live virtual class instead of a Youtube video, forces you to make that appointment with yourself. You signed up and paid for the class, they are expecting you to be there.

  • Work with a Kinesiologist. Kinesiologists are exercise professionals. I will work with you to find ways you can be active during the day and with 1 on 1 sessions we will address your specific needs to help you live your best life!

If you are interested in finding out more about how I can help you reap all those benefits of physical activity, you can book a complimentary Discovery Call!

You can use code NHFD25 to get 25% off any LifeStretch class in June!

Stay active my friends!!

Carrie Doll Kinesiology: Providing in-home and online exercise prescriptions to Kitchener, Waterloo, Elmira, St.Jacobs, Conestoga and area.

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