It’s no secret that working out regularly is the key to a healthier, longer life—but a new study proves that it’s never too late to start doing so.

Middle-aged adults, and even senior citizens, can increase their longevity by becoming more physically active, even if they never previously exercised on a regular basis, according to researchers at the University of Cambridge

A longer life span was even seen in older adults who had heart disease or cancer, the study found. Scientists predicted that 46 percent of deaths associated with inactivity could be prevented if adults met the minimum standard for exercise, defined by the World Health Organization as two and a half hours of moderate to intense physical activity per week.

The study included close to 14,600 middle-aged and senior citizens, 3,148 of whom died during the course of the study (950 of heart disease, and 1,091 of cancer). Researchers predicted that if all the subjects remained inactive, an additional 24 percent would’ve died.

Not surprisingly, according to the study, the more people worked out, the lower their mortality rate was. The researchers urged public health officials to not only encourage people to exercise, but to keep up the intensity as much as possible as they age.