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Nothing makes exercise more fun than a workout partner.

Some of the best ones wag their tails.

Walking the dog is one of the simplest ways to fit a little more exercise into your day. If your dog can handle it, a brisk 30-minute walk, five times a day, can help you meet the national guideline for weekly exercise.

In fact, dog walkers are 34 percent more likely to meet the national standard for weekly exercise, according to a study from Michigan State University.

How much exercise is that?

According to the federal government, adults should do at least 2 hours and 30 minutes a week of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise such as: walking briskly, playing golf or working in the garden. An alternative recommendation is to perform 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity physical activity a week like running, playing basketball or hiking uphill.

Ideally, you should perform some type of aerobic exercise for more than 10 minutes each time and not just in one workout but spread throughout the week.

It’s better for your dog, too.

Unfortunately, American pets have their own obesity epidemic.

A survey recently found that more than half of cats and dogs are overweight or obese. The study, presented by the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, included more than 500 pets from 29 clinics.

Taking your dog for a walk is only fair.

Just like our own weight, we’re responsible for theirs, too.

Alice Warchol is a freelance health writer and fitness instructor.

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