Men and women who use the weekends as an excuse to be coach potatoes could be shortening their lifespan. Middle-aged men and women who do DIY activities and exercises are found to be nearly a quarter less likely to suffer premature death, according to a recent study.

In the study, performing DIY activities was associated with a 23 percent decline in the risk of death from all causes for men, while men and women who did moderate exercise reduced their risk by nearly a quarter. Researchers at the Danish Cancer Society in Copenhagen examined roughly 60,000 middle-aged men and women to observe the influence of physical activity on their life span. In the study, middle-aged was defined between the ages of 50 and 64 years old for men. Researchers recorded the exercise patterns of all participants.

Women who took part in sports such as jogging or running were found to cut their risk of dying by 25 percent, and men reduced their risk by 22 percent. Cycling also had similar benefits for both sexes, while gardening was found to significantly increase longevity in men, the Daily Mail reports. The researchers also found that DIY jobs acted as a protective shield against premature death for men.

The benefits of DIY jobs and exercise were more contingent on the person doing these activities rather than the duration of each physical activity. The findings do not support the belief that spending more time doing exercises or DIY activities increase your longevity. “This could suggest that avoiding a sedentary lifestyle is more important than a high volume of activity,” the researchers wrote in their report, according to the Daily Mail.

In the United States, adults need at least 2.5 hours of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise each week, or one hour and 15 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity, or a combination of both, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Adults are also advised to do muscle-strengthening activities that work all major muscle groups, such as the legs, hips, and abdomen, at least twice a week. Approximately 80 percent of adult Americans do not follow the U.S. government-recommended guidelines.

Published by Medicaldaily.com