Want to control your weight, prevent high blood pressure, improve your mood, boost your energy and sleep better? All those benefits and more can be yours if you’re willing to break a sweat.

Aerobic activity, also called cardio, is one of the keys to staying healthy at any age. This is the kind of exercise that gets you moving and increases your heart rate. Its been said that exercise is medicine, and its true, says Joe Cannon, a certified exercise physiologist and author of Personal Fitness Training: Beyond the Basics. It increases not just quality but quantity of life as well.

Remember, some physical activity is always better than none. If you fall short one week, don’t give up just keep working out and you’ll get the results.

Adults should get in a minimum of two hours and 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity every week, or one hour and 15 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise, according to guidelines issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. If this seems intimidating, start by breaking it up into 10-minute increments. Walking briskly three times a day for 10 minutes at a time will get you to your goal (but don’t count anything under 10 minutes you need to be moving at least that long to get the benefits of aerobic exercise).

Workout intensity by heart rate

Your maximum heart rate is calculated by using the formula 220 minus your age.You can measure workout intensity by comparing your heart rate during exercise to your maximum heart rate.

Flex those Muscles

While aerobic activity is the basis of a good exercise plan, you should also engage in muscle-strengthening activities two or more days a week.

What counts?

+ Lifting weights
+ Push-ups
+ Yoga
+ Using resistance bands
+ Squats
+ Lunges