SUBSCRIBE NOW AND SAVE 3 months just 99 ¢/month

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Health Fusion: How to stick to your exercise goals

Why is it so hard to stick to a new exercise plan? In this episode of NewsMD's "Health Fusion," Viv Williams gets answers from a study about a new approach that may get people to make good on their goals.

Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania found that when people set their own exercise goals -- instead of being told what to do -- they are more likely to stay with the program.

“Most behavior change programs involve goal-setting, but the best way to design that process is unknown,” says Dr. Mitesh Patel. “Our clinical trial demonstrated that physical activity increased the most when patients choose their goals rather than being assigned them, and when the goals started immediately rather than starting lower and gradually increasing over time. These findings are particularly important because the patients were from lower-income neighborhoods and may face a number of challenges in achieving health goals.”

People in the study were given personal step trackers and divided into groups. The group that set their own goals and started right away, increased activity levels the most and made the post positive changes.

The takeaway message for this is to empower people to set their own goals and start reaching for them now. Don't forget to check with your health care provider before starting any exercise program.

This study is published in JAMA Cardiology.

ADVERTISEMENT

Follow the Health Fusion podcast on Apple , Spotify , and Google Podcasts.

For comments or other podcast episode ideas, email Viv Williams at vwilliams@newsmd.com . Or on Twitter/Instagram/FB @vivwilliamstv.

Health-Fusion-logo.jpg

What to read next
On Jan. 24, the Minnesota Department of Health and Wisconsin Department of Health Services recorded 925 new cases of COVID-19 in the Northland and two COVID-related deaths.
The ACTIV-6 clinical trial will include the study of fluticasone, fluvoxamine and ivermectin to treat mild to moderate COVID infection.
The seven-day rolling average test positivity rate as of Jan. 11, the most recently available date for that figure, was 23.7%, according to the Minnesota Department of Health. It's been at that level for three reports in a row.
Throughout the pandemic, rural health care facilities have been overwhelmed, and an already strained workforce is partly to blame. According to Brad Gibbens, acting director of the Center for Rural Health at UND, workforce is the most important policy issue in rural health, especially nearly two years into the COVID-19 pandemic.