Bowel movement like a lot of things is very personal in terms of how often is a good amount of times per day for yourself and what is a good indicator of your overall health and wellbeing. There are numerous factors that can affect how often a person might defecate such as the intake of certain foods, exercise, metabolic rate and age as well. For example food and drinks with high levels of caffeine have been known to cause more frequent bowel movements, where a protein rich diet inhibits this as protein takes a long time to digest.
In general most people have a bowel movement about once per day, and then most often a little more or less depending on what they eat and what they have been doing that day. This is what doctors would call the ideal rate, although for some people once every few days is perfectly healthy and is their ideal rate due to a number of different factors. Similarly younger people and older people might tend to have bowel movements more or less than this amount.
There are certain conditions associated with not having a regular pattern of bowel movement however such as irritable bowel syndrome, where there are numerous frequent movements, or crones disease which affects all aspects of the bowel movement process. If there are any differences in either the color or frequency in your movements that cannot be attributed to a marked change in diet around the time that they started then a medical opinion should always be the first thing to do, just to make sure it isn't something serious and that it can be treated either way so as to get you back to normal as quick as possible.
Rather than looking at a certain pattern that we should all follow a far better indication of your own health is that you yourself have a regular pattern and a similar amount of movements each day. For some people this may be several and for some it may be that less than once per day that is normal. Furthermore the state of the stool itself and the passage itself are better indicators of health than the frequency of the movements. stools that are accompanied by blood, or are either very light or dark in shade, as well as prolonged diarrhea or constipation for example are all signs of ill health in some respect.
Bright blood with the stool is usually a sign of hemorrhoids, which is fairly common and never usually serious, where as darker blood could be something as serious as infections or even bowel cancer. Different colored stools are usually caused by the type of food that we have eaten the previous day, and our body's ability to process that food. For example something very spicy might be harder to digest fully and will come out as a lighter in color than other types of food that we are more used to eating on a regular basis. Spicy foods can also cause diarrhea on a temporary basis.
Doing heavy exercise can also affect the rate at which we pass stools as it stimulates the bowel and helps us to process food faster then usual. The increase in our metabolic rates at this time also helps speed the process as it basically makes all of the functions of the body work faster and the increase in heart rate helps to supply blood faster to all areas of the body, making it work faster.
However if you find that you haven't passed a stool for a number of days you might be suffering from an impacted bowel. This is where feces gets stuck before reaching the anus, and backs up the whole digestive system. Usually a laxative or enema can solve this problem. Although if it is left untreated it can potentially kill you. Famously Elvis Presley was found to have a severely impacted bowel which many have lead to his death.
Overall the only thing that we should be wary of is changes in the frequency of our bowel movements rather then any certain common pattern which most people might fit into. The frequency of bowel movements in general is a personal thing depending on a number of factors and alone is only an indicator of your lifestyle rather then particular health problems unless specific changes are noticed.