A recent study suggests that, among people at high risk for Alzheimer’s disease, moderate-intensity activity may protect against the illness more than light-intensity exercise does. In another study, a 12-week moderate-intensity exercise program boosted memory in people with mild cognitive impairment. To target the moderate-intensity zone, which is 50 to 60 percent of your maximum heart rate, try the talk test. At moderate intensity, speaking takes a little more effort than usual, but you’re able to hold a conversation. Dialing up your intensity can be as simple as increasing your speed during your daily walk or tackling a few hills, or pedaling a little faster if you’re biking. Repeat for a total of about 150 minutes a week (working up to that amount gradually if you’ve been sedentary).
“True enjoyment comes from activity of the mind and exercise of the body; the two are ever united.” Wilhelm von Humboldt