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Exercise and Fatigue

Exercise can improve your energy level and help prevent fatigue. Gentle exercises such as walking, using a stationary bicycle, and swimming are a good way to start an exercise routine.

  • Start slowly. If you have not exercised for a while, you will not be able to complete a vigorous program (even if you want to!). Start by doing 10 minutes of moderate exercise at a time. Increase slowly, and build up your exercise program bit by bit.
  • Aim for at least 2½ hours a week of moderate activity.1 It's fine to be active in blocks of 10 minutes or more throughout your day and week.
  • Try not to overdo it. If you have not exercised for some time, you can easily become fatigued, which will defeat the purpose of exercising.

Moderate activity is safe for most people, but it's always a good idea to talk to your doctor before you start an exercise program.

Citations

  1. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (2008). 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (ODPHP Publication No. U0036). Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. Available online: http://www.health.gov/paguidelines/guidelines/default.aspx.
By Healthwise Staff
William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
David Messenger, MD
Last Revised January 7, 2013

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