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If you hated gym glass as a kid, you probably hate working out now

Middle school gym class. What exactly comes to mind when you hear those words might just determine your feelings on exercising in your adult life. Researchers from Iowa State University surveyed more than 1,000 Americans, aged 18 to 40 years old, using a specially created lengthy online questionnaire. Scientists then analyzed participants’ positive or negative attitudes toward gym class with the participants’ current behavior and attitudes toward physical fitness. Participants also were asked to describe in detail, their best and worst memories from gym class. For those who disliked gym class, their worst memories typically involved embarrassment, bullying, or a general lack on enjoyment. Seven percent of people shared their best memory as a day when they skipped gym class or didn’t have to take it any more. Not surprisingly, people who reported enjoying gym class were more likely to respond that they enjoy physical activities today. They were also…

Adopting these 5 habits can add years to your life, study shows

Everyone wants a long, healthy life, but are we doing what is necessary to actually get there? A new study conducted by Harvard suggests that if American adults integrate five specific habits into their daily lives, their life expectancy will be increased by more than a decade. The recommended five habits are:  1. Don’t smoke 2. Eat a healthy diet 3. Get at least 30 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous exercise, daily 4. Maintain a healthy weight 5. Consume alcohol only in moderation The research, published last month in the journal Circulation, says that adopting these five healthy-habits could prolong your life expectancy at age 50 by a little more than 14 years of woman and a little more than 12 years for men. “The general population just needs to adopt a small step forward toward a healthier lifestyle,” says the lead researcher, Yanping, Li, MD, PhD, a scientists at the Harvard T.H. Chan School…

Every bit of exercise counts toward a longer life, even taking the stairs

Good news for busy people everywhere. A new study reported that every little bit of activity you get in can add up to a longer, healthier life — not just when you do it in half hour or more increments. While advice for the past 30 years as has usually told us to get at least 10 minutes at a time, the latest research from Duke University School of Medicine shows that it doesn’t really matter how you get it, as long as you do. No matter the length of segments people got their exercise, those who moved more were less likely to die over the next six to seven years that those who were less active. Guidelines typically recommend that people get at least 2.5 hours of moderate exercise every week, or about 30 minutes, five times a week. But while, the 10-minute-at-a-time bench mark was widely accepted, it…

These two workout classes are dirtier than your toilet

Gym classes are a great way to keep up motivation to workout. However the camaraderie you build when spinning or spotting isn’t the only thing you’re sharing. It seems that certain gym classes leave you more open to swapping bacteria. While all gym equipment — and all public places, for that matter — carry some expectation of germs, a recent study conducted by EllipticalReviews.com found that there are two gym classes in particular that are more unhygienic than a toilet. The researchers took three swab samples from equipment in four different workout classes (spin, hot yoga, barre, and weight-based workouts). The swabs were measured for the volume of microbes found and then the three samples were averaged to determine the level of colony-forming units (CFU). Weight-based workouts were the worst, with an average of 153,410 CFU detected on an average barbell. For comparison, a toilet seat comes in with about 3,200 CFU — that…

Why being skinny was easier for your parents

It’s unfair but true: Even if young adults today ate the same diet as their parents did at the same age, they would still be heavier. According to a study published in Obesity Research & Clinical Practice, adults in the ’70s could eat more food and exercise less with significantly less chance of gaining weight. The study observed the diets of 36,400 Americans between 1971 and 2008, as well as physical activity logs of 14,419 people between 1988 and 2006. Researchers found that people whose eating and exercise patterns were on par with people 20 or 30 years ago, still weighed about 10 percent more. The study shows that weight management is much more complex than commonly thought. “Our study results suggest that if you are 25, you’d have to eat even less and exercise more than those older, to prevent gaining weight,” Jennifer Kuk, a professor of kinesiology and health science…