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How much exercise is too much and is it harmful?

Q: I regularly exercise so that I remain fit. I wake up at 5 am daily and go for a walk. I then do my exercises for 20 minutes. I come back home at 6:30 am. If somehow I fail to go for a walk, I would go for a walk when I come back from work in the evening. But my family says that I am just tiring my body. They feel that I exercise too much. How much exercise is too much and is it harmful?

A:The rule of the thumb about exercise: Cardiovascular exercises like walking, running, cycling, swimming, etc should be done not more than 6 times a week for a maximum of 60 minutes each time at moderate to high intensity. So if you are doing 20 minutes 6 times a week; that should be ok. Weight/resistance/body conditioning/strength training can be undertaken anywhere from 1 to 4 times a week for each body part, again depending on the intensity. The body does well if it has at least 48 hours of rest between 2 workouts for the same body part. Flexibility and mobility exercises can be done everyday for a moderate amount of time so say 20-30 minutes. But your best bet is to listen to your body. If it is tiring and the amount of exercise you do prevents you from your daily activity, then yes you must lessen it. And varying your regimen can also help bring about some body and mind benefits.

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