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How Exercise Snacking Helps Boost Health

David Castillo | Vail Health Exercise Physiologist
Staying physically active following a cancer diagnosis can be daunting. But a great way to slowly introduce exercise into your daily routine is by “exercise snacking." 

So what exactly is exercise snacking? It’s a way of exercising by breaking up your day with short bursts of low- to moderate-intensity exercise, just like treating yourself to a snack. Instead of focusing on one big workout a day, it encourages you to get in some movement throughout the day. 

The goal with exercise snacking is to move your body in a way that feels good or productive to you without having it feel like a chore. A few ways to add exercise snacking into your day include doing things like walking your dog, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or even marching in place while watching television.

According to a recent American College of Sports Medicine study, exercise snacking was shown to improve cancer-related fatigue. Exercise snacking is a different way to approach exercise — it moves us away from the idea that we must work out for an extended amount of time in order for the exercise to be effective. As cancer patients move into survivorship, exercise snacking can be a powerful way to reduce long periods of inactivity, and it can also lead to improved circulation and heighten energy levels. 

Information in this article was adapted from the following sources: 
Exercise levels and preferences in cancer patients: A cross-sectional study. | Exercise snacks: A novel strategy to improve Cardiometabolic Health. | Don’t Have Time For a Big Workout? Try Exercise Snacking.