Nobody likes to be branded lazy.
But an entire generation stands accused of bone idleness after health bosses revealed that a mind boggling 6.3 million adults, aged between 40 and 60, can’t be mithered to do any exercise.
Public Health England, which is the body tasked with improving our health, has found that, rather than doing the recommended 10 minutes of brisk walking each day, millions couldn’t even muster 10 minutes a month.
From where I am sitting, last week’s headlines about a laziness epidemic have hardly registered in the national consciousness.
Although I do manage significantly more than 10 minutes of exercise over 30 days, I could do much more to lose the extra three stone which has cast a pot- bellied shadow over much of my adult life.
But we have always got an excuse, haven’t we? Mine is that unoriginal combination of kids and a full-time job, but, in recent months I have begun walking more than I have done in well over a decade and already feel better for it. Health experts say that walking for 10 minutes a day, although well below the minimum guidelines of two and a half hours of moderate exercise each month, can serve as ‘baby steps’ on the road to a proper exercise regime.
Public Health England has even taken the step of creating an app for our digital devices called Active 10. It could be that technology may serve as the solution to our growing obesity crisis. In fact, the experts behind this latest push to shame a nation into getting off its backside, believe that if just 10 per cent of the group most at risk took up basic exercise, it would result in a saving of £310m.
If we are really serious then maybe it is time to think about charging those who drive everywhere for at least some of their healthcare.
There is huge resistance to any privatisation of the NHS and while I broadly agree with that sentiment, some people do need geeing up. Measuring daily exercise on mobile phones, and being able to present that evidence to a doctor, might be one way to ensure we lead healthier lives. After all, do we really want to be remembered for being the laziest bunch in history?