How Often Do You Exercise?

How Often Do You Exercise?
Reading Time: 4 minutes

You may have noticed that I have had a poll on the side of my blog to find out how many times per week my readers exercise. I wanted to gain an insight into the type of readers I have visiting the blog, but I’m also interested to see how people choose to break up their exercise into the week. I was really pleased with the number of responses I had, so thank you to those of you that took the time to answer!

Anyway, now for the results…

The results show that most of you seem to make training a priority, with more than half of you exercising 3-4 times per week, and a further 36% keeping active 5-6 times per week.

Exercise Frequency6% of respondents exercise 1-2 times per week, perhaps choosing longer training sessions, maybe new to fitness, or just not finding as much time as you’d like. Interestingly, 6% exercise 7 or more times per week, suggesting either two-a-day exercisers, and/or limited rest days.

But what is best?

Well, there is no concrete answer to this, it is mostly personal. How one person’s body reacts to daily exercise could be completely different to another’s physiological response. It is, however, very important to take rest – either in terms of active recovery days or weeks, cut-back weeks, or full rest days/weeks. Charli Cohen explains this well in her article The Importance of Rest.

One thing my poll doesn’t touch on is training intensity; a daily walk is much less of a toll on the body and is very safe to carry out regularly, whereas hard running sessions (speed work, long runs, tempo sessions etc.) should be kept to a maximum of ~3-4 per week.

Physical Activity Guidelines

NHS Live Well recommendations state that adults aged 19-64 should try to be active daily, and in addition, should do:

At least 150 minutes (2 hours and 30 minutes) of moderate-intensity aerobic activity such as cycling or fast walking every week, and

muscle-strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms).

75 minutes (1 hour and 15 minutes) of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity such as running or a game of singles tennis every week, and 

muscle-strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms).

An equivalent mix of moderate- and vigorous-intensity aerobic activity every week (for example 2 30-minute runs plus 30 minutes of fast walking), and

muscle-strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms).

Keep it Fun

The best advice I can give on keeping active and staying that way is to choose something you enjoy. With so many fitness classes, gyms and outdoor fitness opportunities available these days you are bound to find something you enjoy and can keep up long term. Most clubs and gyms offer trial passes where you can try out a session or a class for free to see what you think; why not take the chance to try something new and maybe find your new fitness passion that will keep you fit and healthy for life? Check out the exercise section of this blog for fun fitness classes/workouts you could try.

Having Time vs Making Time

One last point I’d like to make is that unless you make exercise a priority in your life you will never find the time to do it. As employees, family members, friends and carers we are often so busy we barely have time to think, let alone exercise. But if you make time the benefits far outweigh the time “lost” to fitting in a walk/run or fitness class. Try setting aside just 20 minutes a few days a week, either by setting your alarm just a little earlier, getting away from your desk during your lunch break, or ditching that episode of Eastenders that you really don’t need to watch! Your body will thank you, and your loved ones may well too as they start to enjoy seeing the new, fitter, happier you!

Fitcetera Polls

The next poll question is now up on the side of my blog, this time asking whether you have ever been on a diet. I’ll be really interested to see the responses for this, so if you get the chance, please do get involved and answer – it will only take a few seconds of your time and I will post the results when the poll is complete!

Further Reading

Georgina Spenceley
Georgina Spenceley


  1. 1st October 2013 / 10:01 pm

    I missed the poll, as Ive only just found your site, but Im definitely in the 3 times a week category 🙂

    • fitcetera
      2nd October 2013 / 9:36 am

      Seems to be the most popular category 🙂 Hope you’re enjoying the blog! Have you seen the new poll on the right hand side of the website?

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