Living a sedentary lifestyle when asked about our physical activity, the response usually is, “Yes, I go to the gym” or “I walk in the evening for 30 whole minutes”. With the 24 hours that we are blessed with we must ideally sleep for 7-8 hours (which most of us today can only dream of!), we are in front of the screen pulling for nearly 8-12 hours, so in the remaining 4-8 hours we spare some time either in the morning or in the evening for a walk or the gym. And this has become another job, the job of ‘being fit.’
Exercise and Physical activity are two different aspects of health and the third one being our diet which is the most important one. Exercise is merely a subset of physical activity; making it an important aspect of physical activity though not the only aspect.
Now let us learn the difference between the two. On one hand exercise is something that is planned, consistent, and structured movements; on the other hand physical activity is any small, unplanned, or unstructured movement done throughout the day. You may exercise for 1-2 hours in a day but just by climbing up the staircase instead of taking a lift makes you physically active at work.
Therefore, the difference is simple, exercise is necessary but we also cannot overlook the fact that being physically active is crucial for the overall well-being as mere an hour of exercise is not sufficient to achieve the goodness of overall health. Just like our body needs energy throughout the day and we continue refueling it in the form of food ; likewise, we must walk, take a stroll, stretch, climb stairs, and move around in order to stay physically active and hence healthy.