- Twenty-one per cent say the last time they were physically active was at school, college and university
- The typical Brit has given up doing any form of exercise by the age of 56
- Report carried out by charity British Heart Foundation
PUBLISHED: 11:38 EST, 17 February 2013 | UPDATED: 19:16 EST, 17 February 2013
If you feel you don’t get to the gym as much as you should, you’re far from alone.
One in ten of us has not exercised in more than ten years.
And the typical Briton abandons exercise altogether by the age of 56.
Lifestyle changes, such as moving away from home, getting married and working longer hours increasingly prevent us exercising.
And we have become far less active as a nation, according to a survey of 2,000 adults by the British Heart Foundation.
Some 21 per cent of people say the last time they were physically active was at school, college or university.
Two thirds of us have run no further than 100 yards in the past year – and 40 per cent have not run at all.
Working longer hours was cited as the biggest factor affecting fitness levels – with 41 per cent saying it led to them doing less exercise and eating less healthily – while 22 per cent blamed getting married.
Ellen Mason, of the BHF, said: ‘Adults should try to be active every day and build up to at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity each week.’
A staggering 40 per cent of people have not broken into a run of any sort and 14 per cent say they have jogged no further than 10metres to catch a bus.
Even half of those aged under 24 have ran no further than 100metres in the past 12 months.
The research, carried out to mark the opening of registration for the London to Brighton Bike Ride, shows how we have become far less active as a nation.
Today’s parents say that as a child they walked and cycled 16 miles in a typical week – but, worryingly, their own children do just six miles.
More than a quarter of men admitting that once in a long term relationship they gave up as their ‘looks no longer seemed important’.
The research found that getting married typically causes people to put on 7lbs.
One in six admit gaining at least one stone after finding the perfect partner.
Moving out of their parents’ home and a sudden loss of income – leading to lapsed gym memberships – were also key lifestyle changes.
With 10 per cent of Brits not having exercised in over ten years, the British Heart Foundation is calling for entrants to its iconic 54-mile charity cycle ride in June.
Nancy Prior, head of Events at the charity, said: ‘We are leading increasingly busy lives and it can be difficult to prioritise physical activity as family and work commitments get in the way.
‘But over a third of Brits rate good health as the number one attribute to have.
‘So we would encourage everyone to make time for regular physical activity to help keep your heart healthy.
‘Our London to Brighton Bike Ride, one of the most iconic charity cycling events in Europe, will be opening for registration on Saturday March 2.
‘The ride is for anyone of any fitness and ability and to raise funds that will help the BHF continue its lifesaving fight against heart disease.’
Registration for BHF’s London to Brighton Bike Ride 2013 opens on Saturday March 2.
The ride is on Sunday June 16.