One in six people (16%) in the South-East have not taken part in regular exercise for over ten years, according to a new survey by the British Heart Foundation (BHF).
A total of 43% of people in the South-East said it was over a year since they had been physically active enough to meet national health guidelines.
When asked what stopped people exercising, nearly a quarter (23%) of people in the South-East blamed bad weather, while 12% said they found it boring. Long working hours (26%) was the most commonly cited obstacle.
The figures were released as the charity launched its 2016 events series, which provide people of all physical abilities the opportunity to get active.
There are 60 BHF organised or third party events across the country that people can sign up to, including runs, walks, treks as well as their prestigious cycling series, sponsored by Tesco and Jaffa.
Lisa Young, Physical Activity Specialist at the BHF said: “Physical activity is essential for your heart health and should not be ignored. Keeping fit can reduce your risk of heart disease, as well as help you control your weight, reduce blood pressure and cholesterol, and improve your mental health.
“Just making small changes to your routine can have a big impact. Walk more, get together with friends to do an activity, find something you enjoy and set yourself a goal this year to keep you motivated.”
Nancy Smyth, Head of Events at the BHF, said: “Having a goal is a fantastic way to get active. It gives you a target to aim for and will help tackle some of those excuses we may use to avoid physical activity.
“You can sign up to a BHF event as an individual, or with a team of friends and family. Not only will you be helping improve your physical activity level, but also helping to raise essential funds for life saving heart research.”
Cardiovascular disease kills around 155,000 people each year - more than a quarter (27%) of all deaths. The BHF is the UK’s largest independent funder of heart research and has helped to make significant advances in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cardiovascular disease.
Sign up to a BHF event today by visiting bhf.org.uk/events bhf.org.uk/events for a full list of events and ways to get involved.
It is recommended that people aim for a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise every week, such as brisk walking or cycling.
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