Britain is a nation of couch potatoes with almost half of us failing to undertake any cardio exercise whatsoever, according to new research out today.
The study also revealed that people in Northern Ireland were the biggest couch potatoes in the whole of the UK with a massive 58 per cent admitting to no cardio exercise whatsoever. This equated to 47 per cent in England, 51 per cent in Wales and 53 per cent in Scotland.
The study, undertaken by YouGov on behalf of leading sports nutrition company Predator Nutrition, looked at the lifestyle habits of more than 2,000 men and women from across the UK.
Almost half, 48 per cent, said they did no cardio exercise at all with a further 25 per cent saying they did one hour a week or less.
That means only around one quarter of the population are exercising for more than an hour each week.
Women were more likely to be couch potatoes than men with 50 per cent of all women saying they did no cardio compared with 45 per cent of men.
More than two thirds of Britons don’t bother to train with weights with only 31 per cent of those questioned ever bothering to pick up a dumbbell.
Almost three quarters of women, 73 per cent, don’t do any strength training at all compared with almost two thirds, 64 per cent, of UK men.
Almost one in five of us, 19 per cent, said climbing an average flight of stairs would leave us out of breath, with three per cent saying they would be gasping for air by the top.
Worryingly it seems more and more of us are choosing to spend our free time sitting around on our backsides with eight per cent admitting to sitting down for 11 hours or more every day. While more than a third, 34 per cent, said they sat down for at least seven hours every day.
The study also revealed that a massive 16 per cent of UK adults admitted to eating sugary and processed food every day while almost two thirds of us, 65 per cent, said they ate them at least once each week.
Only a tiny minority, six per cent, claimed to eat their recommended five portions of fruit and veg each week with two per cent saying they ate no fruit and veg whatsoever and more than a fifth, 22 per cent, saying they ate less than seven portions a week.
A spokesman for Predator Nutrition said: “With obesity on the rise in the UK it is disappointing to discover that so many of us are still not finding the time to exercise.
“We were shocked to discover that only about half of Britons bother to get any form of cardio exercise at all.
“Working out with weights can have a massive impact on our fitness levels and our weight – yet less than a third of adults train their muscles.
“Only a quarter of women and a third of men bother to work out with weights despite this being a highly efficient way to exercise.
“It seems many people are still intimidated by weight training yet combined with cardio exercise there are proven health benefits.
“We hope our study will highlight that more needs to be done to encourage people to quit their bad habits and adopt a healthier lifestyle.”