Walking is better than running or sex, say many. But, if researchers are to be believed, of all the exercise regimes, jogging is the fastest and the simplest way to fitness and good health.
Yes, according to a study in Britain, walking, gardening or mowing the lawn is not enough to keep one fit, but far greater benefit can be derived from strenuous exercises such as jogging or playing tennis.
"People have been misled into thinking that all they have to do is a bit of hoovering and gardening and the like but that's not the case.
"Brisk walking offers some health benefits, but jogging, running and other vigorous activities offer maximal protection from disease," lead researcher Dr Gary O'Donovan wrote in the 'Preventive Medicine' journal.
In fact, the researchers from the University of Exeter came to the conclusion after carrying out a study on 1,200 adults in Britain and found that a majority of the people benefited from jogging and other strenuous exercises.
According to the findings, exercise also cuts the risk of cancer, with vigorous exercise being shown to be best at staving off both prostate and colon cancers.
Moreover, running strengthens heart, slashes risk of cardio-vascular disease, reduces risk of blood clot, and lowers cholesterol levels. "Our research has proved the value of strenuous exercise in preventing a range of health problems," according to Dr O'Donovan.
"The bottom line is that people should be physically active wherever possible. They should try to walk to work and take the stairs rather than the lift. To minimise their risk of disease, they should also include some vigorous activity three or more times a week," he wrote.