We all think exercise comes down to time, habits, and motivation, but what about your genes? According to a post on the New York Times‘ Well Blog, “Do Our Genes Influence Our Desire To Exercise?”, European scientists found that at least some of our drive to work out comes from genetics.
Researchers compared the workout habits of identical and fraternal twins between the ages of 19 and 40 in Australia, Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom to see whether those who share all of their genome (identical twins) had more similar exercise habits than those who share half of their genome (fraternal twins). Among the 37,051 sets of twins who participated in the study, identical twins were consistently more likely to share exercise habits than the fraternal twins.
The scientists calculated that genetics contribute to about 60% of our exercise behavior. Further studies have supported their findings, and many researchers are investigating the genetics of active people to learn what we can do to intervene for those who are less predisposed to get moving.
Though this gives us one more thing to blame on our mothers, we also want to forget about this information until they tell us how to unlock our genetic fitness codes: The last thing you need is another excuse to skip the gym.