Beating bowel cancer together

Nearly a quarter of adults don’t feel fit enough to exercise

Nearly a quarter of people (23%) do not feel fit enough to exercise for 150 minutes every week, according to a YouGov poll of 4,000 UK adults commissioned by the charity.

The results are published during Bowel Cancer Awareness Month.

The other three barriers that stop people from meeting the government’s recommendation of 150 minutes of moderate exercise every week are:

  • Don’t have enough energy (22%)
  • Work commitments (20%)
  • Don’t enjoy exercise (18%)

More than a third of young people aged 18-24 (34%) said they’re too busy studying to exercise for the recommended amount of time, whilst a third of people aged 25-34 (33%) cited work commitments as a barrier.

Every year almost 42,000 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer in the UK, it’s the fourth most common cancer. Research shows that taking part in regular physical activity, which is 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity such as cycling or fast walking every week, can decrease your risk of bowel cancer.

Today we launch our latest fundraising challenge, Step up for 30, to encourage people to take up regular exercise and be more active to reduce their risk of bowel cancer, inspired by the findings of our poll. It’s really simple, just get sponsored to do 30 minutes of physical activity every day for 30 days in June. Every 30 minutes someone dies of bowel cancer in the UK.  

Professional dancer and former BBC Strictly Come Dancing pro, Flavia Cacace who is supporting the fundraising challenge, says: "I make sure to fit in a workout wherever I can. Whether that’s a ten minute brisk walk to the shops, a quickstep whilst the kettle boils or a 15 minute more intense cardio session, it all adds up. That’s why I'm supporting Bowel Cancer UK’s Step up for 30 challenge. It’s a great way to get fit and discover types of exercise you love doing.”

Luke Squires, Director of Fundraising at Bowel Cancer UK says: “Exercise doesn’t just have to be about working out in a gym. You could walk, swim, dance, run, cycle, do yoga – the choice is yours! 

“It’s really easy to get involved, there’s lots of creative ways you can get sponsored and get active during the month - doing squats while the kettle boils, taking the stairs rather than the lift, going for a walk during your lunch break, getting off the bus a stop early or even hoola-hooping during the TV adverts!

“Bowel cancer is the UK’s second biggest cancer killer but with your help we can change that.”


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