I think there are plenty of people who are turned off from activity because of some idea that they have to do it a certain way for it to "count." In The First 20 Minutes, Gretchen Reynolds points to research that says that hard training isn't necessary for health benefits:
The first 20 minutes of moving around, if someone has been really sedentary, provide most of the health benefits. You get prolonged life, reduced disease risk — all of those things come in in the first 20 minutes of being active... Two-thirds of Americans get no exercise at all. If one of those people gets up and moves around for 20 minutes, they are going to get a huge number of health benefits, and everything beyond that 20 minutes is, to some degree, gravy.I noticed when watching Season One of "The Biggest Loser" that big dude Maurice, who said he did none of the low-intensity "homework" Bob assigned did not lose as much as the rest of his cohort, even though he performed well during the high-intensity strength and interval exercise. Maybe the stress relief from walking were what helped the other contestants lose? I know that these activities don't have a huge calorie burn. Even running, it's hard to burn the calories in a good-sized donut. There may be genetic or hormonal things going on that we don't fully understand.
And even if it doesn't result in weight loss, something that makes you feel good and makes you healthier is worth doing, right? Right?
Besides, most of us have a partner, a dog, or a kid who would love the extra quality time away from the TV and the mobile phones.