Counting Hours

april 12, 2008

I just saw a commercial from the American Heart Association. It showed people speed walking. At the end fo the commercial, a friendly voice informs us: "For every hour of regular, vigorous exercise we do, like brisk walking, we can live two hours longer." I am being half facetious and half serious with this question: If that is the case, is it really worth it? Look at it this way, you spend an hour walking vigorously to gain two hours of life. That means that your real net gain is an hour of time. So, why do the original hour of exercise at all? Why not enjoy that hour doing something else? It almost seems that the AHA is appealing to us to live longer, not enjoy life more. To the AHA, I propose this question: Why spend all that time exercising now when we're young, so that we can "enjoy" our lives on the backend of life when we are old and waiting to die? Why not enjoy life while we are young and vibrant? I am not arguing against the AHA's recommendation that everyone should get exercise. That is one of the best ways that we can keep healthy and something that most of us (myself included) do not get enough of. What I am questioning is the selling point of the campaign. The way the commercial and campaign is written does not appeal to those that actually process incoming data.